Wednesday, January 16, 2013

ESD Static Control

What is ESD?
ESD, or electrostatic discharge, is described as the abrupt transition of electricity between two objects with different electric potential. ESD is responsible for lightning, as well as the shock a person feels when he or she grabs a metal doorknob after rolling around on a carpeted floor in a wool sweater. While the consequences of lightning can be devastating as compared to the trivial pain of a small static shock, neither example necessarily compares to the financial liability that many companies face when manufacturing things like integrated circuits and other sensitive electronics.

ESD losses can happen at any point in the process, from manufacturing to the field. In other words, the small shock that may give you a giggle can completely fry an integrated circuit (which is expensive to manufacture in the first place) and cost a company millions of dollars.

ESD Causes and Types
ESD can be caused two ways, through tribocharging and electrostatic induction. Tribocharging occurs from friction, like when someone runs a plastic comb through dry hair. Electrostatic induction occurs when an electrically charged object is placed near a conductive object isolated from ground. Here is a quick list of ESD types:

  • •sparks
  • •corona discharges
  • •brush discharges
Sparks have the potential to cause large explosions because of the high temperatures contained in one. Both methane and coal dust explosions have been caused by electrostatic discharges, leaving damaging results.

A corona discharge occurs between a highly curved electrode (e.g. the tip of a needle), and an electrode of low curvature such as a flat surface.

A brush discharge occurs between an electrode with a curvature anywhere from 5 mm to 50 mm, and a voltage of around 500 kV/m. The resulting discharge looks like a brush, hence the name.  

ESD and Modern Man
It took thousands of years, a few wonderful minds like Nikola Tesla and Ben Franklin, and learning from a history of disasters (some experts believe that ESD was responsible for the Hindenburg disaster in the early 1900's. The ship flew through a lightning storm before arriving at its destination, and it is thought by some that an ESD spark was produced after the mooring ropes were let down to the ground for docking), but our knowledge has finally progressed to the point that our ignorance is out-leveraged, empowering humans to successfully build the very things that we use every day and all too often take for granted. ESD can occur almost anywhere. For instance, someone may know how to do basic computer repairs, but if they open up a computer indoors while there is a lightning storm outside, they may be in for a shock, both figuratively and literally. The extra static under such conditions may very well be transferred from the person to sensitive parts of the computer, effectively destroying them. In this scenario, it is recommended that the person do something to ground themselves so that the static never has a chance to destroy the computer.

Controlling ESD
Nowadays, any company that manufactures sensitive electronics should have anti-static devices in place to stop the problem of ESD before it even starts. Here at Janel Inc., we offer anti-static wristbands, Desco ESD mats, static shield bags, and heel straps to keep human workers grounded at all times. They also offer ESD Static Control coatings that form a conductive surface in order to dissipate static electricity on surfaces like concrete floors. Janel Inc. is a huge supplier of Desco, 3M, Protektive Pak, O.C. White, Scienscope and Flambeau ESD prevention devices with literally thousands of products in stock and available at their website,  

About the Author
Janel Incorporated has been supplying the production assembly and electronics manufacturing industries for over 50 years. Janel Inc. distributes products from manufacturers such as Kester Solder, JBC Soldering Tools, Henkel Loctite, Techspray, Excelta, and Desco.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Hot Air Soldering Tools

Hot Air Soldering Tools 101

A complete overview of hot air soldering – comparison of the tools, what they’re used for and who makes them

Hot air soldering tools go above and beyond the more commonplace electrical or butane powered options. They are particularly useful to those who do both soldering and desoldering work as hot air soldering tools are capable of handling either task. This ability to rework a component is what sets hot air soldering tools apart

The Different Types of Hot Air Soldering Tools

Hot air soldering tools work by emitting a steady stream of hot air at high enough temperatures that metal can be melted. A wide variety of hot air soldering tools have been developed over the years for specific purposes

Hot Air Rework Stations

A hot air rework station is a high-end device that gives the operator extreme control over their hot air tools. Most have digital temperature controls as well as pre-selection options. As the name suggests stations often come with numerous components allowing the operator to perform many different tasks – it’s an all-in-one hot air soldering tool

Hot air rework stations typically consist of a unit where the various controls can be found. The soldering tools (some stations include a hot air pencil) are connected to the unit by flexible cords and wide array of nozzles and tips can be attached to the tools.

Hot Air Pencils

Hot air pencils feature a very slim design that is reminiscent of an actual pencil or pen. These lightweight tools are used for precision soldering and desoldering work because of their pen-point tip is super precise. They also are non-contact tools which means it won’t introduce contaminants or cause accidental bumps which displace parts while you’re working.

Hot air pencils are attached to the heating component by a flexible hose. Most components will include temperature and air flow controls.

Hot Air Guns

Hot air guns, also called heat guns, are hand held tools that can be used for many different jobs in workshops and laboratories. This tool is very versatile, able to do everything from stripping paint to welding plastics. In electronics, a hot air gun is primarily used for desoldering components on a circuit board.

Hot air guns are powered by either electrically or by gas flame and are capable of heating up to 1400°F (760°C). Hot air guns resemble handguns, consisting of a body that houses the heating elements, a right-angled handle and a trigger.

Hot Air Knives

A hot air knife is primarily used to remove residue and excess solder. These tools are used mostly in industrial assembly line settings, however there are a few hot air knives that are hand held.

Top Manufacturers of Hot Air Soldering Tools

JBC is one of the oldest names in soldering. For more than 80 years they have been creating innovative soldering tools used in a variety of industries. Janel Online is happy to announce that we now carry the new line of hot air tools from JBC Tools. Their new hot air soldering tools include:
  • •JBC Tools JT-2QA 230V High Power Hot Air Station
  • •JBC Tools JT-9QA 230V High Power Hot Air Station
  • •JT-1B – 120V Premium High Power Hot Air Station with 1000W Heater, Control Unit, Stand, 3 Extractors, 5 Protectors, 2 Tripods + Accessories
  • •JT-2B – 230V Premium High Power Hot Air Station with 1000W Heater, Control Unit, Stand, 3 Extractors, 5 Protectors, 2 Tripods + Accessories
  • •JT-1QB – 120V Premium Hot Air Station with 1000W Heater + Control Unit, Accessories
  • •JT-2QB – 230V Premium Hot Air Station with 1000W Heater, Control Unit, + Accessories
  • •TE-1B – 120V Precision Hot Air Station with 300W Heater, Control Unit, Stand, 3 Extractors, 5 Protectors, and 2 Tripods + Accessories
  • •TE-2B – 230V Precision Hot Air Station with 300W Heater, Control Unit, Stand, 3 Extractors, 5 Protectors, and 2 Tripods + Accessories
  • •TE-1QB – 120V Precision Hot Air Station with 300W Heater, Control Unit, + Accessories
  • •TE-2QB – 230V Precision Hot Air Station with 300W Heater, Control Unit, + Accessories
  • •Wide Variety of Interchangeable Hot Air Nozzles

For over 60 years Wellers has been supplying both the consumer marker and industrial market with rugged, reliable soldering tools.
They have a huge selection of products and offer customers a wealth of information on how to select tips, how to use their tools and more.

Weller hot air soldering tools currently offered include:

  • •Weller WHA3000V Digital Hot Air Station
  • •Weller WHA3000P Digital Hot Air Station
  • •Weller WHA3000PS Digital Hot Air Station
  • •Wide Variety of Interchangeable Hot Air Nozzles

If you have questions, or would like to learn more about hot air soldering tools, contact Janel Online to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members.