Antistatic gloves are especially designed for ESD applications, and they are made from different materials: nylon, latex, nitrile or vinyl are only four of the most commonly used materials. Other common materials include copper or carbon, but they are more expensive than the previously mentioned materials – this is why most workers opt for washable or single-use antistatic gloves that are far more affordable and easier to maintain.
ESD is an acronym which stands for “Electrostatic Dissipative”, and these gloves work in static charged environments as well as cleanrooms, they are dust free and they are widely used in the field of electronic assembly, where workers are worried about static charge and the effects if may have on the electronic components as sensitive electronic parts can be destroyed by static discharge.
The antistatic gloves are comfortable and they provide trustworthy static dissipation – they are efficient and durable, and while most of them are designed for single-use only, others can be washed and they effectiveness stays intact for up to 10 washings or more, depending on the manufacturer.
The purpose of these gloves is to prevent the static field generated by clothing and the oils from hands to reach circuit boards or other electronic pieces, as the static field can cause damage to the components without you even touching them. There are three main devices that are used in electronic manufacturing: wrist straps, mats and antistatic gloves – the gloves are far more convenient as they enhance tactility and they are very durable.
Features and Applications
These gloves are affordable, durable and of superior quality, and they are especially designed for maneuvering sensitive films, circuit boards, electronic components, precision instruments and such – the antistatic gloves are widely used in electronics, optics, aerospace engineering, in the petrochemical industry as well as in telecommunications.
In addition to their durability, ESD gloves do not affect the dexterity or the tactility of the worker in any way, and their materials are created to reduce the build up of static energy. The gloves are completely free of dust and they can be used either in conjunction with antistatic wrist bands or separately, as both of them are equally efficient when handling electronic circuit boards. IT professionals who manufacture computer parts or who upgrade the hardware of the computer (like changing the video card or the sound card or adding more memory).
Other common applications for antistatic globes include the pharmaceutical field, manufacturing of medical equipment, electronic manufacturing, hospitals and such.
Types of Antistatic Gloves
As mentioned above, antistatic gloves are made from a wide range of materials, and all of them have different properties. Nitrile gloves, for example, are perfect for uncontaminated environments as they have textured finger tips, they are free of cornstarch powder and they come with a cuff that prevents them from rolling. These gloves are also suitable for those who are allergic to natural rubber or latex protein, and they are very resistant to chemicals and oils, thus being the perfect choice for applications that are sensitive by default and must be handled with care in order to avoid electrostatic charging.
Nylon gloves, on the other hand, usually come with reinforced fingers or palms – they are slightly more elastic compared to nitrile antistatic gloves and their non-slip surface allows a better grip. Polyester gloves are mainly used in manufacturing plants where static charge must be avoided at all costs – the polyester ESD gloves are perfect for such environments as well as for cleanroom environments, since they are able to dissipate electrostatic charges at a very high rate. Moreover, another important benefit of polyester is that this is a very versatility and highly adaptable material that can be washed and re-used for several times before it loses its ESD effectiveness. All the above-mentioned gloves are available in sizes from small to extra large, they are flexible and reliable.
Last, but not least, vinyl gloves are very resistant to punctures, they are ambidextrous and they also come with strong beaded cuffs that prevent rolling up. Moreover, these gloves come with added protection and they are ready for the assembly area as well as for cleanroom environments. Perhaps the most notable feature is that they have a very small charge decay (lower than 0.1 seconds, generally speaking).