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Electro Static Discharge
When handling, removing and/or soldering solidstate devices, be very careful: in the Winter time static electricity build-up can KILL any active device! Potential differences in the tens of thousands of volts are common. It's the joules of energy delivered to devices that KILLs! Some devices need fewer joules than others. 

When handling the PCB & the parts make sure that you have touched and are holding on to the circuit's ground or power rail (Vcc). 

When attaching one's self to ANY equipment, the hazard of Electric Shock, even Electrocution can always be an unforeseen Possibility.
So use Your -->Or you'll -->  R.I.P.

The idea, of course, is to not allow the device you are handling, to be in the discharge path of the static charge.

When you pick up an IC, transistor or diode, make sure to grab as many leads (pins) as possible. 

When you start to place the device on to the PCB (socket, holes, surface mount pattern), make sure you first have made electrical contact with the board, e.g., with the other hand. 

Finally, always use conductive foam to place your work on, and to place your parts into. 


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