Current electronic devices are created using printed circuit boards to run the devices. The parts on PCBs are fixed in place by solder, which is added manually or mechanically. The circuits and elements can be destroyed by discharges of static electricity, or ESD. Before coming close to any rework station to build or fix a PCB, technicians need ESD awareness.
Making things tinier is the driving force in developing cheaper, more powerful PCBs. But, the more compact the elements and the links between them become, the more vulnerable to ESD they become. The tiniest charge may ruin a PCB.
Static-free environments are of the utmost importance for businesses that mass produce PCBs. These companies invest substantially in building soldering sections that will reduce ESD danger as extensively as possible. Nevertheless, no soldering station can be completely free of static, and there will generally be a tiny number of PCBs that will be defective.
Bearing in mind that this takes place in factories that can afford to use the most up to date laser PCB printers, then small-scale solderers and individual repair technicians, need to be extremely careful whenever using the rework station. Metal stencils, coupled with management software like the extremely popular LPKF, guarantee precision soldering with no manual contact. This is a luxury that is not available to simple soldering operations.
There cannot be many persons who have not heard about static electricity, and have a little knowledge of static discharge. People are familiar with static shocks, as they get them from brushing against metal objects like door handles. They also know that the crackling sound they sometimes hear is triggered by static electricity.
It is very hard to convey how sensitive PCBs are to static electricity, and just how miniscule a charge is required to ruin a board. Minute charges that are so miniscule they cannot be seen, heard or felt are enough to ruin a PCB. This means that it is essential for technicians to take a lot of precautions against ESD if using a rework station.
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