Anti-Static vs Static Shielding Bags
Static shielding, moisture barrier, and anti-static bags are the packaging solutions used for electrostatic discharge (ESD) and are important components in electronic component packaging.
Although “static shielding” and “anti-static” are often used interchangeably, they both have significant differences between the two types of materials. The similarities of both packaging products sometimes might result in a shipment error, which can be costly.
The difference between a static shielding bag and an anti-static bag is that a static shielding bag protects the item from internal and exterior static charges. In contrast, the properties of an anti-static bag keep the contents from creating a static electrical charge.
What is an Anti-Static Bag?
An anti-static bag keeps static charges from interfering with sensitive electrical components. These bags are constructed of polyethene terephthalate plastic and are frequently used to handle and store electrostatic sensitive products.
Because polyethene plastic does not contain or generate charges, the turbocharging effect does not occur whenever something external rubs against the bag’s contents. The polyethene plastic bag is used in product transportation as a bag and as a poly-foam or polyethene bubble wrap to protect the package.
Static electricity can make electronics useless by inflicting severe damage to microprocessors or the internal circuitry of components. These bags are excellent at preventing static build-up, but they do not protect equipment from direct static discharge. Hence, they are only suited for electrical components not affected by static discharges but could be used when static build-up discharge could affect more sensitive parts.
They are available in various sizes, ranging from small bags for RAM chips to large motherboard bags. Many anti-static bags are semi-reflective and silver in colour, while others are primarily clear and black, blue, or pink. The anti-static bag is often used with computer hardware, such as a hard drive or video card.
It’s important to note that only the inside of an anti-static bag is safe. A hardware device placed on the bag rather than within it will not protect it. Placing an electrostatic-sensitive device on top of the bag is potentially riskier.
Use anti-static bags to store and carry items that may come into contact with an ESD-sensitive device. Tools, safety equipment, spare parts, and anything else that could discharge onto a product can all be stored in anti-static bags.
What is a Static Shielding Bag?
Static shielding bags prevent static electricity build-up and guard against ESD. The Faraday Cage created by these multi-layer materials protects components against ESD. Due to the multiple layers of materials, these bags are heavier and bulkier than anti-static bags.
What is it made of?
The bag’s inner layer is made of static-dissipative polyethene, which is covered by an aluminium shielding layer that allows you to freely contact ESD-sensitive objects without static damage. The layer limits the static electricity build-up that could cause the products in the bag to move around.
The aluminium sheet serves as an intermediary layer, providing further protection and acting as a conductor, safely collecting and grounding the static charges around it. Finally, a polyester static dissipative covering coats the bag’s exterior area, which aids in the dissipation of external static charges.
A single shock can fry a motherboard, rendering it unusable. As a result, Static Shielding Bags are an essential part of transportation and the protection of numerous delicate technological components.
Purpose of Static Shielding Bag
Using static shielding bags can shield components inside and outside the bag from static charges, making transporting and storing sensitive electronic components and products easier with these bags. Once the product has been sealed and packed, the product is protected from electrostatic discharge during transportation. Integrated circuits, printed circuit boards, hard drives, computer components, PCBs, and electrostatic products are packed and stored in static shielding bags.
A static sensitive bag should be used to package any product prone to damage from a static electricity discharge.
- Graphic cards
- Other forms of printed circuit boards
When choosing the correct ESD bag, it’s essential to know the purpose of the packaging. We can classify ESD-focused packaging in one of these three levels:
Intimate packaging – Packaging that can safely come into contact with static-sensitive components
Proximity packaging – Packaging that can enclose (but not come into direct contact with) the product
Secondary packaging – Packaging which can only be used for protection against physical damage during the shipping process
Static shielding bags are the only permitted packaging for ESD-sensitive products since they provide intimate and proximity protection. On the other hand, anti-static bags only provide proximity and secondary security. They are only suitable for carrying non-statically sensitive products and components.
Moisture barrier bags and anti-static and static shielding bags may be necessary for specific instances. It would be required in settings where high moisture, precipitation, or humidity levels are typical or predicted.
Each bag has its own set of benefits. Static shielding bags are ideal when static-sensitive components are transported into a static environment. Anti-static bags protect static-sensitive components against harm caused by static electricity.
We now have solutions within our reach that can provide static protection and control with the help of advanced technology. So, if you work in the electronics industry or operate an electronics company, investing in anti-static or static shielding bags is critical for your product’s preservation.