ESD Flooring Options for your Cleanroom

If you are controlling ESD in your cleanroom, you need to choose the right protection for your floor. Here is a comparison of basic options.

Electrostatic discharge (ESD) can cause damage to electrically sensitive equipment and analytic processes as well as cause a fire or explosion near flammable materials. Using ESD flooring helps ground personnel in an effective and economical manner.

Your ESD flooring selection process should begin with an evaluation of both your intended use and possible future uses. Your intended use includes:

  • Evaluating devices or processes most sensitive to ESD events
  • Chemical resistance
  • Aesthetic requirements

Every type of material used for ESD flooring will have advantages and disadvantages in each specific environment and application, so consider the following options with that in mind.

  1. Resilient ESD tile and sheet goods. If there is neither danger of liquid spillage nor presence of heavy point loads, these products offer good general service. They’re fairly economical and come in a variety of colors and finishes.
  2. ESD carpet. Carpet offers ergonomic value and sound reduction, but non-ESD carpet is a major source of electrostatic discharge. With conductive fiber and backing, this option provides effective grounding of potentially damaging charges. ESD carpet finishes are typically reserved for administrative areas.
  3. Two-component ESD epoxy floor paints. These are water-based products applied in thin films. This makes it inappropriate for applications under heavy physical use, but it’s an economical option for flexible spaces or large areas with light to moderate levels of use.
  4. Polymer ESD coatings. These provide a seamless surface resistant to liquid spills. Variations are available for chemical resistance and/or slip resistance. As the options get more advanced, they provide better protection under heavy loads .

There are also temporary solutions best used as a stop-gap measure, like ESD waxes and other topical treatments. Again, your evaluation of current and future uses will determine which option is right for you.

When you need cleanroom validation, certification, or expansion, contact Gerbig Engineering Company. We provide expert solutions and thirty years of experience. Call 888-628-0056 or email today.

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