# Questions regarding electrostatic charge decay.

• wiredGuy
In summary, the article discusses how static charge decay works and how long it can take for the charge to dissipate. It also mentions how some materials are more resistant to charge decay than others.
wiredGuy
Hi,

I've had a pretty good experience with physics forum in the past, so when I ran across something I couldn't find an answer to on the web, I figured why not ask it here..

I found a great introduction to electrostatic charge decay located at http://www.ce-mag.com/archive/2000/marapril/mrstatic.html .. after reading the article I was left with a few questions.

1) Since the article was written eight years ago, I was wondering if we've made any progress in terms of determining how much charge will be collected when two materials are rubbed against each other.

2) Is there any way to prevent static charge decay? one underlying thing I think the article points out is that the decay occurs as electrons pass through surrounding material to neutralize the charge on the substance in question. This movement occurs as magnetic fields push the electrons around eventually leading to a neutralization over time.

3) if the charge was well insulated, or surrounded by elements that are more extreme on the triboelectric scale wouldn't this force the charge to be retained even if a magnetic field passed through the substance? (Unless the field was strong enough to overcome to overcome the resistance provided by the surrounding substances).
I would also appreciate greatly if anyone could tell me how I can calculate static charges accurately. Or reproduce similar charges consistently (Like, doing a, b and c ensures at least x coulombs of charge are present on block A for T seconds).

Last edited by a moderator:
Hi,

wiredGuy said:
1) Since the article was written eight years ago, I was wondering if we've made any progress in terms of determining how much charge will be collected when two materials are rubbed against each other.

I think, the methods are similar to those used 8 years ago, but maybe the measurement setups got better. But I don't know whether it is what you meant with progress ;-) ?

wiredGuy said:
2) Is there any way to prevent static charge decay? one underlying thing I think the article points out is that the decay occurs as electrons pass through surrounding material to neutralize the charge on the substance in question. This movement occurs as magnetic fields push the electrons around eventually leading to a neutralization over time.

Do you really mean "magnetic" and not "electric" fields ?

Generally the higher the resistance of the material, the longer it takes static charge to decay. So if you take good insulator like teflon (and clean it very well for removal of any dirt, fingerprints, fat etc) and put a cahrged thing on a teflon plate in dry air (20% air humidity or less), you can keep the charge on a charged device for a fairly long time (the electric field from this charge can be monitored, e.g. by a field meter, like in the article you have mentioned)

cheers

Hello,

Thank you for reaching out with your questions regarding electrostatic charge decay. I am happy to provide some insights and information on this topic.

1) Since the article was written eight years ago, I was wondering if we've made any progress in terms of determining how much charge will be collected when two materials are rubbed against each other.

Yes, there have been advancements in our understanding of electrostatic charge decay since the article was written in 2000. Scientists have conducted numerous studies and experiments to determine the amount of charge that can be collected when two materials are rubbed against each other. However, the exact amount of charge collected can vary depending on factors such as the materials involved, the relative humidity of the environment, and the speed and force of the rubbing. Therefore, it is difficult to provide a definitive answer to this question.

2) Is there any way to prevent static charge decay?

There are some ways to minimize or prevent static charge decay, such as using anti-static materials, grounding the charged object, or using ionizers to neutralize the charge. However, it is not possible to completely eliminate static charge decay as it is a natural phenomenon that occurs due to the movement of electrons.

3) If the charge was well insulated, or surrounded by elements that are more extreme on the triboelectric scale, wouldn't this force the charge to be retained even if a magnetic field passed through the substance? (Unless the field was strong enough to overcome the resistance provided by the surrounding substances).

Yes, surrounding the charged object with materials that are more extreme on the triboelectric scale can help to retain the charge for a longer period of time. However, as you mentioned, a strong enough magnetic field can still overcome the resistance provided by the surrounding substances and neutralize the charge.

In terms of calculating static charges accurately, there are various methods and instruments that can be used, such as electrostatic voltmeters or charge sensors. However, it is important to note that the accuracy of these measurements can also be affected by external factors such as temperature, humidity, and the presence of other charged objects.

I hope this helps to answer your questions regarding electrostatic charge decay. If you would like more information or have further questions, feel free to reach out to me. Keep exploring and questioning, that's what science is all about!

## 1. What is electrostatic charge decay?

Electrostatic charge decay is the process by which an object loses its electric charge over time. This can occur due to various factors such as air currents, humidity, and surface contaminants.

## 2. How does electrostatic charge decay affect electronic devices?

Electrostatic charge decay can cause damage to electronic devices by creating an imbalance in the electrical charge, leading to malfunctions or even permanent damage. It is important to control and minimize electrostatic charge to protect electronic devices.

## 3. What are some common methods for reducing electrostatic charge decay?

Some common methods for reducing electrostatic charge decay include using conductive materials, grounding techniques, and ionization. These methods help to dissipate excess charge and maintain a neutral or balanced charge on objects.

## 4. Why is it important to control electrostatic charge decay in certain industries?

In industries such as manufacturing, electronics, and healthcare, electrostatic charge decay can cause serious problems. For example, in electronics manufacturing, it can damage sensitive components, while in healthcare settings, it can interfere with medical equipment. Controlling electrostatic charge is crucial for maintaining safe and efficient operations in these industries.

## 5. How can I measure electrostatic charge decay?

There are various instruments available for measuring electrostatic charge decay, such as electrostatic field meters and charge plate monitors. These devices can measure the amount of charge on an object and how quickly it dissipates. It is important to regularly measure electrostatic charge decay to ensure proper control and prevention of damage.

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