Electrostatic Discharge Explained

By on December 8th, 2016 in learning

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 Electrostatic discharge can really mess with your 3D printer
Electrostatic discharge can really mess with your 3D printer

A manufacturer of electrostatic discharge protection products contacted us and it seems that “ESD” is something all 3D printer operations should know about. 

While it can be rare, ESD can be catastrophic. Whether you’re building a 3D printer kit or using an expensive industrial machine: ESD can destroy the electronics in your equipment. 

Foam Fabricators has put together a detailed infographic explaining everything you need to know about ESD. The full graphic is available for download here, but for this post we are chopping it into segments for your reading pleasure. 

We’ve all experienced mild electrical shocks as described above, but if you’re assembling a 3D printer kit, touching wiring and electrical components the same thing could happen. 

While most industrial 3D printers are properly grounded, there are moments where you might be inside the machine to perform maintenance or other activities that raise the potential of ESD. 

This is the most insidious type of problem caused by ESD: an intermittent or rarely occurring problem. Imagine spending hours, days or even weeks trying to diagnose such a problem. 

Your 3D printer is made from all of these material types. 

Failure of your 3D printer through ESD can happen in various ways. You’d think that it would always be a catastrophic failure, but that’s not the case. 

Every electronics technologist knows to properly ground themselves and take other necessary precautions when working on electronic equipment, but it’s possible that 3D printer operators may not be as aware. 

We strongly recommend taking adequate precautions when working on any 3D printing equipment. It’s easy to do and could save you an enormous amount of time and money. 

Via Foam Fabricators

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!