Industrial Applications of Electrostatics

HOME | Fundamentals | Industrial Static Control | ESD | Article index





Electrostatics is put to good use in a wide variety of applications. For examples, the electrostatic precipitator enables smoke emissions from power-station chimneys, smelting plants, and other industrial plants to be reduced to relatively low, acceptable levels. On a smaller scale, efficient filters exist for removing dust from the air in offices, public places, and the home. In some filters, dust particles undergo corona charging as they are sucked by a fan through a duct, and are then collected on grounded electrodes; in others, permanently electrified filter material is used, made from thin plastic sheets which have been treated by surface bombardment from a corona ion source.

In several applications which utilize electrostatics, solid or liquid particles are charged and sprayed onto grounded objects. Dry powder coating is used in many industries in preference to the wet-paint-spraying process. Crop spraying is another important application in which electrostatic forces help to efficiently apply herbicides or insecticides.

Research into electrospraying, sometimes called electrohydrodynamic atomization, is leading to new applications for the deposition of ceramic, glass, and polymer films and for powder particle production of special materials. The electrospraying of materials is also used for analysis by means of mass spectrometry, as the electrospray process is gentle and does not disrupt delicate complex molecules.

Top of page


Wednesday, February 27, 2013 21:54