The Cause for ESD Wastebaskets

December 4, 2013




This week’s ESD Q&A question comes from StaticCare reader Stephanie, she asks:

Question: Is there really a need for an ESD wastebasket?


Hello Stephanie,

Thank you for taking the time to submit your question to Transforming Technologies.

It is fair to wonder why there is a need for ESD wastebaskets. If the basket resides underneath a workstation and stays there permanently, the need may not exist. It is extremely unlikely that a wastebasket that stays underneath a workstation could present a danger to ESD sensitive devices, regardless of the field voltage that may exist on the basket.

There are a number of circumstances however, when the wastebasket could present a significant hazard to electronic products. The following are just a few examples of potentially risky scenarios:

Work surface cleaning:   The operator lifts the wastebasket to the edge of the work station to collect the debris being removed. Should product be present on the work surface and not contained in a shielding container, there is a good opportunity for exposure to electrostatic fields that exceed safe limits.

Lead trimming/board cleaning operations:   When trimming component leads or using aerosol cleaners on PCBs (Printed Circuit Boards), some operators will hold the PCB over the wastebasket to catch the clippings or solvent run-off. Many times the PCB will be placed well into the waste container to assure catching the unwanted materials. This operation puts PCBs and ESD sensitive devices very close to potentially significant electrostatic fields.

Aisle proximity:  Some wastebaskets have been observed in close proximity to production floor aisles where product transfer carts pass or may be parked. ANSI/ESD S2020 requires items that generate 2000 volts or more (measured at 1” from the item) be kept at least 12” from ESD sensitive devices. Using ESD wastebaskets eliminates the risk of carts being parked next to static generating baskets.

While company ESD policies may prohibit some of the actions mentioned above, it does not mean that they will not occur from time to time. ESD wastebaskets provided assurance that the wastebasket will never be an ESD threat to your product.

Transforming Technologies offers ESD wastebaskets in static dissipative polypropylene and in stainless steel for clean room operations. If a liner is to be used for easier maintenance, Transforming Technologies offers them in both conductive and static dissipative.

WBAS28 ESD Wastebasket



  • Volume: 28 Quart (7 gallon)
  • Height: 15″, Opening: 10.5″ X 14.75″
  • Carbon Loaded


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