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Question The products my company works on are SGI computers. We occasionally have to remove the system boards, and install CPUs or Memory. I have currently been tasked with establishing an ESD area for our company. I have purchased table mats, wrist straps and wrist strap monitors. I have marked the area clearly with color-coded tape on the floor, as well as hanging signs declaring the area as an ESD area. Are there any other steps I need to do to ensure the area are set up correctly? - Ralph Brandt, Rosses Medical, Columbia, MD
Answer Even if you make the assumption that all devices are class 0, there are still a few things that need to be addressed. All ESD sensitive components coming into the area need be in sealed ESD protective packaging, if not, they may already have been damaged upstream from your ESD safe work area. All employees handling ESD sensitive devices in the ESD safe work area need to be properly trained, so they know how/why to wear their wrist strap, how to test it, when to wear it, how to handle ESD sensitive devices including the opening of ESD packages. Your vendors supplying ESD sensitive devices need to both handle them correctly and package them correctly. Control the necessary insulators at your ESD safe work area with ionization or topical ESD treatments. Remove unnecessary insulators from your ESD safe work area. Check the integrity of your ESD ground, common point ground Make sure an operator doesn't come in more than 12 inches from an ESD sensitive device before donning their wrist strap (make it easy to plug in at front of bench) Set up and monitor scheduled auditing of your ESD safe work area to ensure all items are in compliance, including the operators training.
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