ESD Related Problems with CD's
Response to this article by Keith Donaldson
By Elizabeth Nelson
Technical Information Supplied
by Anna Maria Steriti
Have you experienced any computer
problems (such as error messages, or loss of data on the CD) after
inserting a mass-produced CD into your computer's disk drive? These
problems may be attributed to ESD.
Maria Steriti has been active in the ESD industry for many years.
She has recently brought to our attention the problem of ESD on
CDs. The connection between ESD and CDs seems to have been ignored.
Documentation is lacking in this area and it is important that testing
is conducted to get to the bottom of this problem.
The dongle (this is a key that is sent
with a CD to avoid piracy) may also be a ESD hazard. They are shipped
in static shielding bags, but the problem still exists. This leads
industry experts to believe that the problem occurs on the dongle,
or CD, itself. Anna Maria explains that "when CDs are reproduced
in mass, they become extremely charged" and are then placed
into the jewel case. The charge has no way of dissipating. The CD
is placed into the CD-ROM and creates error messages, glitches,
and the program that is on the CD may even disappear from the computer's
Many times, these errors are attributed
to bugs in the software, when the real problem may likely to be
due to ESD. Testing on CDs is difficult to conduct and the results
are not always reproducible. Furthermore, the problem does not seem
to occur on individually burned CDs, only when CDs are mass produced.
In the future, there may be ways to
solve this problem (once it is determined that the problem does
actually exist). Anna Maria's possible solutions would include an
ESD jewel case, a CD ionizer, or even a CD antistatic spray.
If you have any information on ESD
problems associated with CDs or dongles, please E-mail the ESD Journal.