Engineering

Published on June 5th, 2020 | by Bibhuranjan

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How Does A Static Eliminator Work

To know how a static eliminator works, it is important to know what a static eliminator is and what its capabilities and uses are. In many industrial processes, the constant use of electrical motors and engines that run on a 24/7 basis, machinery tends to operate at certain temperatures and over the course of use, builds up dangerous static.

OSHA has recognized the hazards of plastic piping that builds up static electricity where flammable gases are conveyed through pipelines. Surprisingly to many individuals, metal tools that come in contact with static can also be a hazard.

Reference

However, static is not limited only to heavy duty machinery. Static can also occur in commonly used computer devices, printers and scanners even though these are equipped with internal fans. Basically, static is an imbalance that can occur in or on the surface of certain materials.

The Guide to Static Eliminators

Keep in mind static that occurs on the surface of certain materials is also repelled by an identical static charge. This is basically what a static eliminator does: it draws off static charges by replacing them with charges that counteract. A static charge contains ions that are positive or negative. Therefore, these ions react to the static by either a positive or negative ion that repels static.

A static eliminator is often referred to as an ionizer since it contains positive or negative ions that are the energy force that repels static. This is how a static eliminator works. Its major job is to identify static and proceed to repel it with the appropriate type of positive or negative charge.

The Mechanical Design of a Static Eliminator

In most cases, the static eliminator is designed by mechanical engineers who work from particular specifications based on the type of area and equipment that may be hazardous or consistently builds up static.

The basic features of the design of a static eliminator are based on several important details:

  • The specific negatively charged sample
  • An equal balance of the generation of ions
  • A sample that has been exposed to ion
  • A graphic detail of only exposed ions
  • Visual end result of positive and negative ions cancelled (repelled) as proof the sample is free of static charges

When Do You Need a Static Eliminator?

Static eliminators invariably fill the need for a broad range of static related problems in industrial and business facilities.In most cases, there is usually damage to equipment from static or minor fires or explosions. In addition, workers may be experiencing electrical shock as a result of static in the workplace from charged particles in the air stream.

Note that these hazards occur more often in confined spaces with limited or no ventilation. This includes areas like grain elevators, enclosed paint booths, fuel refineries, construction sites and other facilities where confined space entry is subject to potential explosion.

These facilities are required to comply with OSHA 29 CFR 1910.146, Permit Required Confined Spaces; OSHA 29 CFR 1926 Subpart AA, Confined Spaces in Construction as well as state and municipal compliance regulations. OSHA also offers Confined Space training and OSHA Confined Space Entry Permits are required by OSHA certification.

Certain pharmaceutical testing labs are also required to comply with OSHA and provide a SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) manual outlining the use of a static eliminator as used in the facility.

With regard to static elimination in confined spaces, OSHA requires that “equipment used in confined spaces must operate at a safe voltage for example greater than 50 V alternating voltage, greater than 120 V DC, or be driven by air. In exceptional cases, electrical hand tools (equipment) with a normal mains voltage (220V) may be used.”

Ref: https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3825.pdf

It is easy to see why it is important to choose the most efficient, effective state-of-the-art static eliminator available. Since all types of facilities are under OSHA workplace safety regulations in addition to municipal and state requirements, OSHA inspectors determine if compliance is being met by facility owners and workers. Their drop in inspections are done without advance notice in order for these inspections to be totally thorough and comprehensive to OSHA compliance regulations.

OSHA specifically states that “the majority of OSHA inspections are conducted without advance notice.” It’s easy to see why if a static eliminator is needed and compliance has not been met, this may result in a regulatory fine for non-compliance.

Ref: https://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/factsheet-inspections.pdf

A Static Eliminator at Work

When the various design features and uses of a static eliminator are clearly understood, it is important to know the actual work they do.

In a hypothetical case where dust is highly charged with static, a static eliminator as provided by Exair.com turns over highly charged static with clean, dry and cool applications.

In addition, Exair static eliminators reduce noise and air consumption according to OSHA compliance. The Exair.com static eliminator is available in several mechanical designs, for example, the Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife and Gen4 Standard Ion Air Knife. These are just two examples of models of static eliminators.

Each of these static eliminators meet design specifications for operational effectiveness, range of effectiveness, air amplification and static decay. The work of a static eliminator diligently removes and reduces static problems by metering the actual status of the area containing static.

A static eliminator calculates the amount of negative and positive ions and determines the amount of charges cancelled. If the facility has generated a significant amount of particle charged dust into the area or workplace, a static eliminator provides a method of reducing hazards and restoring ambient air for workplace safety.

A professional expert of static eliminators also assists with existing static problems as well as those that may become potential problems in new facilities.For new facility and business owners, potential static problems should be considered once the business owners are fully informed of OSHA, state and municipal compliance regulations.

Static Eliminators – A Business Necessity

In addition to the fact that OSHA, states and municipalities require workplace safety compliance, it is also important to consider factors involving potential for extraneous employee risk and business liability.

An investment in a static eliminator pays off in ROI by avoiding costly repairs to equipment and liability claims, should an injury occur as a result of a static fire or explosion resulting from static build up. Such risks may also incur loss of customers and business property. A static eliminator investment, in consideration of the risk factors, is a necessity when total loss of business is a factor.

Which Static Eliminator is Best?

Quality is always a priority when purchasing a static eliminator. Fortunately, Exair offers several choices that meet most any type of business need to reduce the risk of static accidents.

If you are unsure of the specific type to purchase or unsure of the specifications your facility may have, a professionally trained manufacturer with long term experience in intelligent compressed air products can help with any questions.

Exair is an industry leader that has assisted clients since 1983. This is also a company that consistently updates and upgrades their product line to meet changes in the hi tech world and also their customers needs.

Get To The Heart of the Static Problem

When it is obvious there is a static problem, it is best to address it sooner than later to avoid costly problems. With the wide range of choices of static eliminators offered, it is a simple matter of choosing Exair.com, an industry leader for the assurance of highest quality products and excellent customer service.

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About the Author

Bibhuranjan

Editorial Officer, technofaq.org I'm an avid tech enthusiast at heart. I like to mug up on new and exciting developments on science and tech and have a deep love for PC gaming. Other hobbies include writing blog posts, music and DIY projects.



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