What is a static shock?

Most of us will relate to the gold-leaf electroscope experiments we did as children in school. Few of us think on it later in life and file it away under “school lesson”. However, Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) is omnipresent at most workplaces.

First a recap: Electrostatic discharge is the transfer of electrostatic charges between bodies at different potential caused by direct contact or induced electrostatic field. This definition includes a discharge from the human body into the air and also a discharge to the ground.

Static electricity is generated when two materials rub against each other and this causes static shocks. Some of us are zapped more often than other because of various reasons – the kind of clothes we wear, the shoes we sport or by just the way we walk makes us more prone to static shocks.

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