What is a Grounding Strap
Electricity is a volatile force, presenting various risks to sensitive electronics and individuals if proper protection is not in place. Electrical shocks are a hazard associated with energy sources or conductive materials, occurring when electrical energy suddenly flows into a material or individual when contact is established. Electrical shock can be extremely dangerous, presenting risks of injury or death to individuals or the complete failure of electrical devices. To prevent the hazards associated with electrical shock, components known as grounding straps are regularly used.
A grounding strap, or ground strap, is a type of anti-static device that may be employed to route electrical current into a safe space of ground for the means of deterring electrostatic discharge (ESD). Grounding equipment is crucial for the wellbeing of both individuals and electrical equipment, allowing such components to be handled safely while also ensuring the health of sensitive electronic components. There are multiple grounding strap variations, often specified by their strap type, strap material, and strap shape. Ground straps are also often manufactured in compliance with safety standards, common ones being from Underwriters Laboratories (USA), Canadian Standards Association (CAN), and Restriction of Hazardous Substances (EU).
While grounding straps may come in a number of shapes and forms, common types consist of tinned copper braid wire that is terminated with the use of metal connectors. The braid wire of the strap consists of numerous smaller wire strands that are braided together to achieve high strength and rigidity that enables the component to excel in harsher applications. As copper braid wire also provides high flexibility while remaining conductive, such grounding straps are very beneficial for preventing shock.
While tinned copper is popular due to its conductivity, corrosion resistance, and ease of soldering, there are numerous other conductive materials commonly used such as aluminum, copper, stainless steel, nickel-plated materials, and silver-plated materials. Furthermore, the strap type may also vary depending on the product, common alternatives being mesh or grid, sheet or strip, and solid wire types. The shape of the grounding strap is most often either flat or tubular, though some are known to use more specialized shapes despite being less common.
As grounding straps may be found in numerous applications and industries, the installation method of the component may differ depending on the implementation. Generally, however, it is important that one end of the grounding strap is connected to a metal surface of the conductive assembly that needs to have electricity routed. Meanwhile, the other end will either be directed into a safe ground surface for termination or may be connected to another metal piece depending on the application. It is important that the grounding strap fits cleanly and tightly, ensuring that it stays put for the means of safety. If one is bonding two metal pieces together, there should always also be a ground to neutral point for guaranteeing safety.
With the capabilities and uses of grounding straps, such components are paramount for the safe operation of conductive assemblies that may pose the risk of electrical shock. Accelerating RFQs is a leading distributor of aircraft parts, offering customers unmatched pricing and lead-times on over 2 billion new, used, and obsolete items that we currently carry. If there are particular grounding strap components that you need for your operations, our team of industry experts are readily on standby to provide you with quotes for your comparisons or may assist you through the purchasing process as needed.
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