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Question What is the difference between a conductive mat, a static dissipative mat and an insulative mat in terms of intended use and applications? Is conductivity the only qualification for each type? Anonymous, Lagrange, Georgia
Answer The first level difference is the mats ability to conduct a current which is depicted by its reference to conductivity (conductive, dissipative, insulative). This is important for many reasons. Conductive mats are typically used in ESD control on the floor to allow some margin for insulative build up (dirt, sand, and other insulative particles). Dissipative mats are ideally used in ESD control on workstations for work surfaces. Insulative mats are used in high voltage applications or testing stations where conduction of a current could be hazardous to the operator or equipment. There are several other variables to consider when choosing a mat such as surface hardness, charge decay, charge retention, surface abrasion, color, chemical resistance, heat resistance, among other properties. Some of these properties a application specific, others are user preferred.
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