Re: Static

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From:Jim Hall <>
To:"Weems, Joyce" <>, "'Histonet'" <>
Date:Fri, 01 Oct 1999 09:42:22 +0100
Content-Type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"


Many years ago we had problems with our Pye pH meter.  This particular
meter had a dial with a swinging needle and every time one of our lady
technicians, not the males, walked passed the meter the needle would shoot
up from zero to maximum deflection.  You could argue that the meter was
male and it was its equivalent to a wolf whistle!!  It did however play
havoc when the ladies tried to obtain accurate pH measurements.  We deduced
that the cause was static electricity caused by the fact that the ladies
tended to wear nylon type clothes and underwear.  Changing to cotton type
clothing seemed to reduce the problem. 

I also have used the radioactive ioniser John, but I did not find it made
any difference, raising the humidity did generally help though.  The old AO
Spencer microtomes had an external clamping screw to which one could earth
the microtome using wire to a water pipe.  This never seemed to work
either.  Some days are just better or worse than others.

The introduction of the retracting microtome has helped by cutting down the
friction caused between the knife and the block on its way back up,
changing the knife angle can also have an effect in reducing static and
placing the blocks in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes as opposed to
melting ice can also help.


At 11:33 30/09/99 -0400, Weems, Joyce wrote:
>Does anyone have any good solutions to eliminate static electricity? We have
>a tech who carries a large charge :>) and she is about to go crazy! Thanks,
>Joyce Weems
>Pathology Manager
>Saint Joseph's Hospital of Atlanta

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