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MODERNIZATION OF FACILITIES AND HANDLING PROCEDURES FOR STATIC SENSITIVE DEVICES (SSDs) IN ELECTRONICS INDUSTRIES

INTRODUCTION
WHAT IS ELECTROSTATIC DISCHARGE? HUMAN BODY AS A DC TRANSFORMER ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF A MATERIAL COMBATING ESD

CONCLUSION

Electrostatic damage of electronic equipment and components by operating personnel is one of the most significant problem, which directly effects the reliability and operational maintainability of electronic equipment.

The electronic devices which can be easily damaged by Electrostatic discharge are called Static Sensitive Devices (SSDs). All types of ICs and semiconductor devices come under the category of SSDs.
These devices easily get damaged by voltages ranging from 100V to 2000 Volts.

Human beings by normal movements like walking, raising a hand or foot, getting up from a chair, etc. can generate charges up to 20KV In fact people can easily hold charges up to 2 KV without any feel of it and this 2 KV is sufficient to damage SSDs either fully or partially. The partial damage to SSDs under the stress of continuous operation will result in premature failure of the component / electronic equipment affecting the reliability of the electronic equipment.

REPORTED SUSCEPTIBILITY OF VARIOUS DEVICES EXPOSED TO ELECTROSTATIC DISCHARGE Sl No. Device Type Range of ESD Susceptibility (in volts) 100V 200V 100V 300V 100V 140V 7000V 150V 500V 190V 250V 250V 3000V 300V 2500V 300V 3000V

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

MOSFET Ga As FET E PROM JFET SAW (Surface Acoustic Wave) Op-Amp CMOS Schottky Diodes Film resistors (Thin, Thick)

10.
11. 12. 13.

Bipolar Transistors
ECL SCR Schottky TTL

380V 7000V
500V 1500V 680V 1000V 1000V 2500V

Table also shows that if the voltages in working environment can be maintained to less than 100Volts then damage to Static Sensitive Devices (SSDs) should not exist due to Electro Static Discharge(ESD).

WHAT IS ELECTRO STATIC DISCHARGE (ESD) ? BASIC MECHANISM OF PHYSICS BEHIND ESD When two dissimilar objects are brought together in close contact and then pulled apart, they get charged. One object will exhibit a net positive charge and the other, a net negative charge.

This transfer of charge creates an electro static voltage difference. This voltage difference between two objects is typically of the order of few volts. When these two objects are drawn apart, the voltage difference produced may be of the order of 10 KV to 100 KV. This effect of charging through contact and separation is called Tribo Electric Effect.

TYPICAL TRIBOELECTRIC SERIES

WHEN COTTON AND STEEL ARE RUBBED TOGETHER,COTTON WILL BE POSITIVELY CHARGED AND STEEL WILL BE NEGATIVELY CHARGED. _ + 0 THE CHARGE GENERATED BY(COTTON,STEEL)PAIR IS LESSER THAN THE CHARGE GENERATED BY THE(PAPER,WOOD)PAIR

HUMAN BODY AS A DC TRANSFORMER


Human body behaves like a capacitor and exhibits different capacitances, depending on the body posture, distance between the body and surrounding object.
From the basic definition of capacitor Q = CV , if C decreases, V increases. In a parallel plate capacitor C is inversely proportional to separation between the objects (d) i.e. C 1/d Thus pulling the objects apart from an initial separation of 10 Angstrom unit to a separation of 1 millimetre we might expect a magnification of the potential difference by a factor of 10 to the power 6. Few actual measurements of human body capacitance changes were taken by Western Electric firm in USA which are illustrated as follows:-

CAPACITANCE CHANGES IN PERSONNEL IN A WORK AREA


Description of Movement Change in movement Person seated one foot raising 192 capacitance due to % Change

Initial capacitance

Final capacitance 163 129 15% decrease 33% decrease

Person seated, picking 192 up both feet placing on the foot rest Person seated, leaning 192 forwards in chair (Desk type chair with back) Standing raising arms person 167

184

4% decrease

141

16% decrease

Seated standing up

person 192

167

13% decrease

ELECTRO STATIC DISCHARGE (ESD) PHENOMENON


When a charged human body comes in contact with an electronic component or electronic equipment it discharges through an available discharge path. This discharge is called Electro Static Discharge (ESD). Even if a charged person doesnt touch the SSD, the electro static field generated will induce static charges on the device which can also result in damage to the SSD. This direct injection of charge in an SSD device can damage the molecular structure of the device resulting in permanent failure or partial damage to the device.

SHOWING THE WAY STATIC ELECTRICITY IS GENERATED AND DISCHARGED

WALKING ACROSS A FLOOR RESULTS IN CONTACT AND SEPERATIONS OF SHOES WITH FLOOR RESULTS IN TRIBO ELECTRIC CHARGE i.e. BUILDUP OF STATIC ELECTRICITY

REDISTRIBUTION OF CHARGE RESULTS IN ELECTRICAL IMBALANCE. TO RESTORE BALANCE THE CHARGE MUST BE DISPERSED

IF A CHARGED PERSON TOUCHES A COMPUTER OR AN ELECTRONIC COMPONENT IT DISCHARGES THROUGH AN AVALIABLE DISCHARGE PATH.THE CHARGE THAT IS RELEASEAD CAN DESTROY OR DAMAGE THE SENSITIVE ELECTRONICS.IN MOST CASES THE PERSON WILL NEVER FEEL THAT DISHARGE EVENT HAS TAKEN PLACE.

DIFFERENT ELECTRIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF MATERIALS


There are four varying degree of electrical resistance : INSULATIVE : It does not allow flow of electrons across or through its bulk. The material has high electrical resistance. Surface resistivity is 10 to the power 13 Ohms per Square. ANTISTATIC : Static electricity caused due to friction gets dissipated within two seconds. Surface resistivity is less than insulated material i.e. 10 to the power 9 and 10 to the power 13 Ohms per square. STATIC DESSIPATIVE : Material allows transfer of electrons to ground or through other conductive objects. Surface resistivity 10 to the power 6 and 10 to the power 9 Ohms per square. CONDUCTIVE : It allows a charge to flow across or through its volume easily. Surface resistivity is 10 to the power 6 Ohms per square.

COMBATING ESD
At present in Indian Industries anti-static precautions are hardly taken into consideration due to the lack of knowledge in the field of ESD phenomenon . Repair Depots, electronic repair labs are using anti-static measures to some extent but there is a requirement of complete modernisation of facilities and handling procedures for SSDs to combat ESD by operating personnel at Repair depots, Labs, and also by Logistics, who are directly dealing in storage, handling, packaging and shipping of SSDs. To combat ESD, it must be understood that the SSDs remain Static Sensitive throughout their working life i.e., right from the manufacturing, packaging, shipping, storage, and even when mounted in a PCB or a Module. Therefore, all assemblies containing SSDs are to be treated as if they are Static Sensitive themselves.

VARIOUS METHODS TO COMBAT ESD


STATIC SAFE FACILITIES THE PROTECTED AREA

MATERIAL : Use of materials, that are major static charge generators must be prohibited where SSDs are handled.
OBJECT OR PROCESS Work surfaces Floors MATERIAL OR ACTIVITY Waxes, painted or varnished surfaces Common Vinyl or plastics Sealed concrete Waxes/ Finished wood Common Vinyl tile or sheeting Synthetic garments Non conductive shoes Virgin cotton (below 30 % RH) clothes Finished wood Vinyl Fiber glass Common plastic bag, wraps, envelopes. Common Bubble pack, foam Common plastic trays, plastic Tote boxes

Clothes

Chairs

Packaging, Handling and stores

Assembling, cleaning, test and repair area

Spray cleaners, common plastic solder suckers Soldering irons with un-grounded tips

FLOORING For maximum protection, the floor of the work area should be conductive. Conductive floor tiles and floor mats are commercially available. ACCESS Access to a work area where SSDs are stored or handled must be restricted for the personnel not trained in SSDs protection procedures. SIGNS/ SYMBOLS Warning signs can be displayed such as ESD PROTECTED AREAS AUTHORISED PERSONNEL ONLY.

LABEL FOR IDENTIFICATION OF STATIC SENSITIVE AREAS

ENVIRONMENT
HUMIDITY

The relative humidity where SSDs are handled or stored should be controlled between 40% to 60%. Where this cannot be achieved, the use of ionised air is required. IONISED AIR
Ionisers generate positive and negative charge and reduces the resistivity of the air, thus making the air more conductive. When this ionised air comes in contact with a charged surface, the charged surface attracts ions of opposite polarity, as a result, the static electricity, that has build up on SSDs and surface of the equipment, is neutralised.

VARIOUS TYPES OF IONISERS

THE WORK STATION FOR SSDs


Various types of static safe work stations are commercially available which include anti-static table, chairs and associated accessories.

The work surface (table top) and the floor mats are grounded through a 1 Mega Ohm resistor. This ensures operator safety, and limits the discharge current, which protects a charged device.
The conductive table top should provide a surface free of static charge and must be capable of removing static charges. The maximum allowable resistance to ground of the work station should be such that, the elapsed time of discharge from higher voltage to 100V must not exceed one second.

ANTISTATIC TABLES

WRIST STRAP

ANTISTATIC TABLE/ FLOOR MATS

ESD SAFE CHAIRS

COMPLETE ANTISTATIC WORK STATION

WORKER PROVISIONS
CONDUCTIVE WRIST STRAP
A conductive wrist strap in both the hands must be provided to ensure that the worker is at the ground potential. 1 Mega Ohm resistor is required between the strap and the anti-static earth to limit the discharge current and for operator safety. HEEL GROUNDERS Conductive foot ware (or a conductive strap on conventional foot ware) offers additional protection. CONDUCTIVE GARMENTS Some fabrics can generate static electricity. Workers should wear over garments that dissipates charges. Few general fabrics which are commercially available are as follows : Cotton Polyester Cotton Polyester blends. Cotton Polyester blend with additional stainless steel threads.

ANTI STATIC TEST EQUIPMENT


Following Test Equipment are mandatory specially for electronic repair labs : Surface resistivity meter : It measures both resistance to ground of an Anti Static work station. surface resistance and

Wrist Strap and Footwear Tester : It checks wrist strap resistance maintained between 1 Mega Ohm to 10 Mega Ohm and Footwear resistance which should not be more than 100 Mega Ohm.
Work Station Monitor : It continuously monitors the serviceability of ESD earth of Wrist Strap & Work Stations. There is no need for periodic checks.

Static Charge Meter : It provides on the spot measurement of Static Charge. It checks the presence of Static Charge on any surface, material or people. It also detects the value of static charge and its polarity.
Human Body Voltage Checker : It detects the value of Static charge a person is carrying. It can be wall mounted outside the ESD protected area. It allows the operator to discharge to a safe handling limit before entering the ESD protected area. ESD Portable Kit for field repair : It is used by the technicians/ engineers for on site repair of electronic equipment where Anti Static work station is not available. The only requirement is of an Anti Static earth at the site.

SURFACE RESISTIVITY METER ESD SAFE MAGNIFIER

STATIC CHARGE METER

WRIST STRAP& FOOTWEAR TESTER

WORK STATION MONITOR

HUMAN BODY VOLTAGE CHECKER

ANTISTATIC TEST EQUIPMENTS

ESD PORTABLE KIT FOR FIELD REPAIR OF ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT

STORAGE AND TRANSPORT


CABINETS FOR STORAGE OF SSDs Should be conductive (e.g. Steel) and should be grounded through 1 Mega Ohm resistor.
Containers used to store or transport SSDs must be made out of conductive material. Containers holding SSDs should be stored only on conductive, grounded surface.

PACKAGING OPTIONS Products to be shipped must be packed in one of the following : Anti Static/ Conductive bags. Conductive tubes (for ICs) Anti Static/ Conductive sheets/ cushions, etc. Packages should have and ESD warning, stamp or label, affixed on each package. In case of any doubt regarding the exact type of packaging to be used, an Anti-Static/ Conductive bag should be used.

WIRE SHELVES FOR STORAGE

CONDUCTIVE CURTAIN WALL FOR ELECTRONIC EQUPIMENTS STORAGE

STORAGE OF SSDs

CONDUCTIVE COMPONENT ORGANIZER

CONDUCTIVE STORAGE

ANTISTATIC AIR BUBBLE BAG

PACKAGING/STORAGE OPTIONS

ANTISTATIC CUSHION

CONDUCTIVE SHEET

PACKAGING OPTIONS

ANTISTATIC BENCH FOR PACKGING & SHIPPING OF SSDs TO BE USED BY LOGISTICS

CONDUCTIVE TAPE

WARNING LABEL ON PACKAGING

CONCLUSION
Practically in today's world all aircrafts, space vehicles missiles, and communications systems , Radars and all type of electronics systems have ICs and other semi conductor devices as the electronic system. To improve the reliability of the electronic systems, one of the major areas of protection is ESD protection for all electronic equipment/ component. This will also result in high maintainability of state of the art electronic equipment which in turn will fulfil requirement of mission critical applications and also the users requirements. It will also result in savings of foreign exchange since spares requirement will be comparatively less.