Power Supply grounds

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by Jeff Dege, Apr 1, 2006.

  1. Jeff Dege

    Jeff Dege Guest

    I have a B+K Precision 1651 DC Power Supply.

    On the front panel, there's a banana jack marked "Ground" . The manual
    describes it only as "Earth and Chassis ground".

    What I'm wondering is whether this is a connector that provides access to
    ground, or if it's a connector that I'm supposed to connect to ground.

    My cheapo Radio Shack soldering station has a ground banana connector on
    the back, and it has a two-conductor power cord, so I know it's not access
    to ground but rather something that should be connected to ground. (And
    to the ground of whatever I'm soldering on, but that's another issue.)

    But the Power Supply has a three-conductor power cord. It's chassis and
    case should be grounded through that. Could I then use that banana
    connector to ground my soldering iron, wrist strap, etc.?

    I guess I'm just not sure what sort of protections people use when they're
    working on static-sensitive devices. I've done little of it, and I've had
    pretty good luck.

    My understanding is I want to common-ground everything - work, soldering
    iron, power supply, worktop anti-static mat, wrist strap, etc. - and to
    connect that common ground to ground. Connect it all together and connect
    it to the ground of the household mains. (And make sure that the mains
    are actually grounded - wired to a cold water pipe.)

    Is that the case?

    And if so, would the Power Supply ground connector be an effective way of
    connecting everything on the desktop to the mains ground? Given my
    desktop layout, it'd certainly be the most convenient way. But would it
    work?

    --
    It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker
    that we expect our supper, but from their regard to their own interest.
    - Adam Smith, "The Wealth of Nations"
     
    Jeff Dege, Apr 1, 2006
    #1
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  2. Jeff Dege

    Ralph Mowery Guest

    "Jeff Dege" <> wrote in message
    news:p...
    > I have a B+K Precision 1651 DC Power Supply.
    >
    > On the front panel, there's a banana jack marked "Ground" . The manual
    > describes it only as "Earth and Chassis ground".
    >
    > What I'm wondering is whether this is a connector that provides access to
    > ground, or if it's a connector that I'm supposed to connect to ground.
    >
    > My cheapo Radio Shack soldering station has a ground banana connector on
    > the back, and it has a two-conductor power cord, so I know it's not access
    > to ground but rather something that should be connected to ground. (And
    > to the ground of whatever I'm soldering on, but that's another issue.)
    >
    > But the Power Supply has a three-conductor power cord. It's chassis and
    > case should be grounded through that. Could I then use that banana
    > connector to ground my soldering iron, wrist strap, etc.?
    >
    > I guess I'm just not sure what sort of protections people use when they're
    > working on static-sensitive devices. I've done little of it, and I've had
    > pretty good luck.
    >
    > My understanding is I want to common-ground everything - work, soldering
    > iron, power supply, worktop anti-static mat, wrist strap, etc. - and to
    > connect that common ground to ground. Connect it all together and connect
    > it to the ground of the household mains. (And make sure that the mains
    > are actually grounded - wired to a cold water pipe.)
    >
    > Is that the case?
    >
    > And if so, would the Power Supply ground connector be an effective way of
    > connecting everything on the desktop to the mains ground? Given my
    > desktop layout, it'd certainly be the most convenient way. But would it
    > work?
    >
    >

    The ground connector on the power supply is connected to the frame (box it
    is in) and that should be connected to the ground wire on the power plug.
    Hopefully you are working where the AC power ground is a real ground.

    When working with static sensitive devices, the object is to get them all to
    the same electrical potential. Hopefully ground out any static charges to
    the earth. Yes, the way to do it is to connect everything together and find
    a wire or water pipe that is actually going to the ground. With many places
    using plastic pipe , the old cold water pipe ground may not actually make it
    to the earth electrically. If using a wrist strap, make sure it has a high
    value resistor on the lead to the ground. You want it high enough that if
    you do contact the 120 VAC wiring for some reason it will not pass enough
    current to harm you. Something in the range of about 1 meg will usually do
    it.
     
    Ralph Mowery, Apr 1, 2006
    #2
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  3. Jeff Dege

    Jeff Dege Guest

    On Sat, 01 Apr 2006 18:25:24 +0000, Ralph Mowery wrote:

    > "Jeff Dege" <> wrote in message
    > news:p...
    >>
    >> My understanding is I want to common-ground everything - work, soldering
    >> iron, power supply, worktop anti-static mat, wrist strap, etc. - and to
    >> connect that common ground to ground. Connect it all together and connect
    >> it to the ground of the household mains. (And make sure that the mains
    >> are actually grounded - wired to a cold water pipe.)
    >>
    >> Is that the case?
    >>
    >> And if so, would the Power Supply ground connector be an effective way of
    >> connecting everything on the desktop to the mains ground? Given my
    >> desktop layout, it'd certainly be the most convenient way. But would it
    >> work?
    >>

    > The ground connector on the power supply is connected to the frame (box it
    > is in) and that should be connected to the ground wire on the power plug.


    I could, I suppose, check that with my multi-meter.

    > Hopefully you are working where the AC power ground is a real ground.


    It's an old house, with cast-iron mains.

    > When working with static sensitive devices, the object is to get them all to
    > the same electrical potential. Hopefully ground out any static charges to
    > the earth. Yes, the way to do it is to connect everything together and find
    > a wire or water pipe that is actually going to the ground. With many places
    > using plastic pipe , the old cold water pipe ground may not actually make it
    > to the earth electrically. If using a wrist strap, make sure it has a high
    > value resistor on the lead to the ground. You want it high enough that if
    > you do contact the 120 VAC wiring for some reason it will not pass enough
    > current to harm you. Something in the range of about 1 meg will usually do
    > it.


    I bought a wrist strap, I didn't make my own. And like all commercially
    manufactured grounding straps, it has a honking big (1 MOhm) resister in
    series.

    --
    There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few
    who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric
    fence for themselves.
    - Will Rogers
     
    Jeff Dege, Apr 1, 2006
    #3
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