Air purifiers vs ESD-danger


Question from Norway here. I came over this site browsing for advice on ESD. Covid19 forced us to set up a temporary workplace at home, putting together computers, we have to have some measures to keep ESD to a minimum. Since the workstation is at home, there are kids playing in the same room when we are not working. So that makes it difficult to avoid dust, even though wacum cleaning regularly. So we are thinking of get an air-purifier to run, and see if that helps to the dust problem. My concerns is if that will increase the risk of ESD, I see that some fans have ionzing effect, but not sure what that means. Or will it actually help in controlling ESD?

I have a desktop Ionizer, that I use workbench. So if the purifier is bad for ESD, will running the Ionizer after the running purifier make it good again?

Here is links to a couple of air purifiers I’ve had a look at:

Thanks in advance for any advice

Cheers from Norway

Hello and welcome to the forum.
Interesting question. First of all, ionization, has a very limited range. While I can’t answer the question with facts and I haven’t measured these items, the ionization from this device will not flood the room with ions. If you are worried about the ionization place the device as far away from your work area as possible.
Second, the local ionizer will most likely create much more ionization at your work area. Of course, measurements can be taken to verify it all. To make a measurement would require a charge plate monitor or it can be done with a field meter and a metal plate. Even if you just have a field meter, the area could be surveyed to evaluate if any charging is occurring.
I hope this helps.


A measurement would have to be taken to see if then air purifier is generating any static charge. I would doubt there is any charge generated by purifier if it is a UV light type purifier, and if any it would be very low charge. Some air purifiers use electrostatics to charge the air to aid in the removal of impurities air these types of purifiers may cause the air to be more charged. Air purifier are used to CLEAN air, although there will be some filtering properties to these types of units.

You mentioned that you have a desktop ionizing fan at your workbench. This device at the work site will control most static charge within the working volume of the ionizer, as long as the ionizer is operating properly with a properly balanced output, which can be verified using measurments. I would recommend using passive ESD control measures as well as the ionizer (wrist straps, properly grounded work surface, removal of all insulative materials from workspace, ect.). Taking the time to ensure the work site is as free from charge as possible will prevent damage to the computers you are building.

As far as the dust; control of the static charge will help in controlling some of the electrostatic attraction of the dust from the room, but a better route may be that you establish a temporary “clean room” setup to keep as little dust in the working area as possible. I’m not suggesting spending large amounts of money to build a certified ISO class clean room, but an area that can be isolated from the rest of the room with low charging (ESD safe/low charging) plastic walls, and a fan/filter unit blowing air from the top of the structure down over the work surface may be an effective way to keep the work area clean. There are several companies that sell these types of setups, or you could build your own for the possibly the same cost of the air purifier (Internet search would give you ideas). Just a suggestion to get you through this crazy time we are all going through.

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Thanks guys and sorry for late response from me here. I bought a Simcon FMX003 fieldmeter and did some testing with and without air purifier. My workspace looks good and it was no difference with or without air purifier working.
I got in touch with a company that works with ESD solutions here in Norway, asking for advice on the air purifier, and he said that he didn’t think the ESD purifier would make problems for me. About purifiers with ion-function, he would not pay extra for that function. His qualified guess was that implementing ionization on air purifiers, had its origin back in the 80s when people was talking about the air felt so fresh after thunder and lightning, and the belief was that the lightning was the reason. He had never heard of research confirming that belief.

I think the purifier removes som dust from the air, and regular vacuum cleaning keeps workspace ok.