How do 2 Layer ESD rubber worksurfaces work?

Two Layer ESD Rubber - How Does It WorkCovering your work surface with ESD material is a basic step in ESD prevention. With a proper ESD worksurface, static is safely removed from items placed on the surface. There are several types materials used, but a very popular one is 2 layer ESD rubber. What is a 2 layer rubber and how does it work?

What Are 2 Layer ESD Rubber Mats Made From?
ESD Rubber mats can be made with several different rubber types, with Nitrile (NBR) being very common. They are available in several widths that fit most common workstations and they may come in pre-cut sections or in full rolls.  What is consistent, is that ESD rubber mats are constructed with two layers:

  • Top Layer: A colored top layer (blue, gray, green and gray are most common) with Dissipative Electrical Properties
  • Bottom Layer: A black black bottom layer with Conductive Electrical Properties. 
  • Ground Cord: Some type of cord that connects the mat to a Ground Source.

Why two layers?  Read below to see how ESD rubber mats work.

How Do 2 Layer ESD Rubber Mats Work?
For ESD purposes, materials are classified by their resistance to the movement of electricity. High resistance, equals slow charge movement. Low resistance, equals fast charge movement. Dissipative is the word used to describe medium electrical resistance while conductive describes low electrical resistance.

When a charged object comes into contact with the dissipative top surface of a mat, it drains from its surface in a slow and controlled manner. This reduces the danger of a spark.  The charge is attracted to the bottom conductive layer because it is the path of least resistance. The conductive bottom layer has a low electrical resistance and quickly sends the charge to ground via a ground cord that includes a current limiting resistor for safety.

Transforming Technologies has some of the most cost effective ESD rubber available.

  • The MT4500 series is 0.80″ thick with a smooth rubber surface in light blue, royal blue, gray and green.
  • The MT2500 series is constructed from the same material as the MT4500, but is thinner and more cost effective.
  • The MT4000 Textured series ESD rubber matting is made of 100% co-extruded rubber, 0.080″ thich with a textured surface in light blue, royal blue and gray.

For help deciding on your ESD mat, view our guide How To Choose an ESD Mat.

Need more help?  Contact Transforming Technologies for your work surface ESD rubber needs.