With electronic components becoming smaller and more sensitive, it’s important to ensure they’re protected against ESD events including static discharge. As stated in ANSI/ESD S20.20, “Protective packaging is required to store, transport, and protect ESDS electronic items during all phases of production.” According to the recent 2018 requirements for ANSI/ESD S541, the shielding requirement was changed such that remaining discharge for the bags should be 20 nanojoules or less. One of the more commonly used bags is a low charging Pink Poly bag. These bags are made with a tinted polyethylene material and an antistatic coating that will wear away. Over time, this makes the bag become an insulator, as such, it is no longer compliant to ANSI/ESD S541 recommendations. They also lack discharge shielding protection that makes components in the bag vulnerable to ESD event damage. Metallized Shielding bags are manufactured with a metalized polyester film and a low charging polyethylene laminate. This film provides the bags with a shielding layer that creates a Faraday cage which protects the ESD-sensitive components inside the bag from possible ESD event damage. The low charging inner layer and outer layers of the bag prevent tribocharging from occurring, which minimizes the buildup of ESD charges when handling components.
Have you been questioned about the shelf life of ESD bags by your quality manager? Maybe it is an internal quality procedure that is being written and you’d like to know where the manufacturer stands on the shelf life of ESD packaging. Well, today we’ll discuss the topic of ESD Static Control bag storage and the expected shelf life. There are 1000’s of things to consider when we discuss shelf life. Temperature, storage rack conditions, transportation method, and local climate to name a few. So the key points are:
- Avoid extremes: heat, cold, sunlight, moisture, add controls when possible
- In a controlled environment, our ESD bags have seen 5 years of provable shelf life.
- As a best practice, follow the FIFO process for inventory control.
- ESD static bag manufacturers that we represent has a 1 yr warranty from the date of purchase. Be sure to audit annually or prior to use as a best practice and to be sure that your devices are receiving maximum protection.
- If your bags are questionable, recycle the product at your local recycler and order a new lot from Restronics.