Static Electricity Produced by Plastic and Plastic-Lined Containers

Main keywords for this article are Static Electricity Produced by Plastic and Plastic-Lined Containers, Static Electricity Produced by Plastic Sample Bottles.


Static Electricity Produced by Plastic and Plastic-Lined Containers

Static Electricity Produced by Plastic and Plastic-Lined Containers

Handling of flammable liquids in plastic containers of various sizes ranging from 5 to 55 gallons capacity is potentially hazardous. While filling the container, charges can be
accumulated in the liquid as a result of splashing, turbulence, or filtering. Nearby conductive objects, insulated from ground, can become charged by induction. Rubbing
the external surface of the container during handling can cause induction charging of the liquid. Each of these causes of charging can produce hazardous sparking in a
flammable environment. Following safeguards are recommended:  
a. Grounding of all metal parts on or near the container
b. Providing for charge dissipation by bottom-filling with a grounded lance
c. Grounding persons who are handling flammable materials
d. Minimizing rubbing of plastic containers

Nonconductive liners for fiber drums which are filled with finely divided, combustible organic salts or similar free-flowing granular or powdered materials may accumulate
static charges sufficient to cause ignition of the powder. This accumulation of charges can be controlled by the use of plastic liners of the conducting type and grounding of
the liners.  

Static Electricity Produced by Plastic Sample Bottles

Initially uncharged liquid, brought into a charged plastic bottle, will become charged by induction and may cause hazardous sparking to ground or to other conductive objects.
This hazard is greater for ‘conductive’ liquids than for nonconductive liquids. A charged bottle partially filled with a conductive liquid is very hazardous. Spark is produced as
the liquid approaches a person’s hand, conductive equipment, or a safety can. 

Static electrification of a plastic bottle is measured to determine the electric field intensity (kV/in) at the surface of the bottle. Static measurements provides a direct digital readout of field intensity (kV/in) over the range of 0 to 20 kV/in with a meter spacing of 1 inch. Values below 4 kV/in are not likely to be hazardous.  

Static charges can be removed by:
a. Wiping empty bottle with a wet (water) rag
b. Immersing empty bottle in water
c. Setting empty bottles on a metal shelf in a high humidity location overnite  before use to allow time for the bottle charges to dissipate, or
d. Using an ionizing air blower to neutralize static charges on the empty bottles

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