Almost all businesses use some form of machinery, whether your company size is just a few people or thousands of employees. Electrical equipment allows for static electricity to build. Not only can this lead to mechanical failure and computer glitches, it could present a serious safety risk to workers and patrons in the vicinity.
All materials, including both insulators and conductors, emit electrostatic discharge (ESD). ESD is a rapid transfer of electrostatic charge that typically creates a spark between two objects with differing potentials. Lightning is an example of ESD on a massive scale. On a smaller scale, ESD occurs after you walk across a carpet and feel a shock upon touching a magnetically-charged surface, such as a metal doorknob. While humans are not directly harmed by everyday static electricity, electronic damages are more susceptible to damages.
The Dangers of Excess Static
Static electricity is a bigger problem than ever. According to the ESD Association, today’s high-tech culture introduced more problems in regards to static electricity and electrostatic discharge, especially as devices become faster and smaller and increase in sensitivity.
ESD can cause the following:
Damages or destruction to sensitive electronic components
Equipment malfunction or failure
Contaminant buildup within fibrous surfaces
Sparks that can cause fires in flammable settings
While most businesses opt to back up their files on an external hard drives, you never know when a serious malfunction is going to occur. Using anti-static mats to eliminate excess static minimizes the probability of related computer failures and the countless hours required to replace lost work and files. An estimated $40 billion is lost annually from ESD damage in the electronics industry.
In 2007, a fire and series of explosions occurred at the Barton Solvents chemical distribution facility in Des Moines, Iowa. The U.S. Chemical Safety Board determined that the cause was a static electrical spark from inadequate bonding and grounding of a portable steel tank. While one employee suffered minor injuries, the damage could have been worse.
Anti-Static Mats: The Technology
Investing in anti-static mats is necessary for both manufacturing facilities and office settings. Eagle Mat’s static dissipative matting protects electronics from ESD that may otherwise inflict damages on nearby surfaces and endanger employees. These mats remove the static electricity from individuals before they touch sensitive items. Business owners and facility managers often use static dissipative mats to surround sensitive equipment that could experience shortages. Our static dissipative anti-fatigue mats offer two-fold benefits: static control and comfort to reduce employee exhaustion.
In addition, Eagle Mat’s non-conductive switchboard mats insulate and protect workers from high voltage equipment. Each of these mats is capable of absorbing over 30,000 volts of electricity, and are best placed in areas where high voltage machinery is used.
Placing a mat near equipment not only reduces the static from your office or warehouse equipment, but also keeps surfaces clean for a healthier workplace. Static electricity can magnetize surfaces, causing dust and dirt to accumulate on equipment and surfaces nearby – including the carpet fibers underneath.
For more information on Eagle Mat’s static dissipative matting and non-conductive switchboard mats, call us directly at (877) 333-1018. Our team is here to help make your workplace a safer, static-free zone.