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Electrostatic Discharge Information

Electrostatic discharge (ESD), is static electricity or the release of static electricity. ESD can damage the electronic components of a computer such as the disk drive, motherboard, processor, memory, PCI and ISA boards, etc.

ESD occurs when you touch an object that conducts electricity, and that object is at a different electrical potential than you are. A difference in electrical potential can be created by walking across a carpet or certain types of tile, by petting a cat, or touching other animal hair. ESD is actually a spark that jumps from you to the electrical component. Even though the spark seems small and insignificant, it can contain many hundreds, or even thousands, of volts that can drastically damage the electrical components of the module.

To protect your memory module from ESD damage, keep the module in its original ESD-protective package. Do not remove it from the protective packaging until immediately before you are ready to Install it into the socket inside your computer.

Generating Static

The table below shows how different activities generate static electricity at different electrostatic voltage levels.

Typical Electrostatic Voltages
Event Relative Humidity
10% 40% 55%
Walking across carpet 35,000V 15,000V 7,500V
Walking across vinyl floor 12,000V 5,000V 3,000V
Motions of bench worker 6,000V 800V 400V
Removing DIPS from plastic tubes 6,000V 800V 400V
Removing DIPS from vinyl trays 11,500V 4,000V 2,000V
Removing DIPS from styrofoam 14,500V 5,000V 3,500V
Removing bubble pack from PCBs 26,000V 20,000V 7,000V
Packing PCBs in foam-lined box 21,000V 11,000V 5,000V
Note: 700 volts can degrade a product


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