Based on an original publication by Larry Levit, Ph.D.
Though often overlooked, the presence of static electricity in the cleanroom can create serious issues resulting in reduced overall profitability. All too often, this effect is simply written off through budget changes citing unforeseen issues. However, with proper understanding the issue of static electricity in the cleanroom is wholly preventable.
What makes a cleanroom unique?
Often maintained at a low relative humidity (RH) to optimize production, the cleanroom is designed to exclude most particulate contamination through the use of high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. Any object brought into the cleanroom is first wiped with special cloths or cleaners, which unfortunately also produce static charge – particularly when coupled with the low relative humidity level.