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Old Mar 13, 2006, 10:35 PM   #1
SamIchi
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Why Does Static Smell?

Anyone?

I hate static on my clothes, very uncomfortable. It also has a wierd smell that I don't like either.
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 10:37 PM   #2
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It smells?
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 10:38 PM   #3
SamIchi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trainguy77
It smells?
Ya know, when you pull off your sweater really quick, there's this scent.
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Old Mar 13, 2006, 10:39 PM   #4
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No idea... ozone? Maybe your sweaters are dirty or just stinky?
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 02:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stonyc
No idea... ozone? Maybe your sweaters are dirty or just stinky?
Are you questioning my cleanliness? It's not a dirty smell nor stinky. Comb you hair a few times then smell it, or rub a balloon on a sweater or hair and take a whiff. You'll see what I'm talkin bout.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 02:34 AM   #6
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Simple. The positively charged ions attract the ozone in the upper troposphere which, on their way down, bind with the heavier CFC's that people spew out of their spray deodorant cans. Once they reach sea level the ozone is completely broken down into two highly unstable parts. The negatively charged half binds with the statically charged item and the positive side is attracted to latex paint, particularly mint green, and breaks down further into protons and electrons that proceed to do absolutely nothing because I have know idea what I'm talking about.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 03:08 AM   #7
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I have never smelt static. I am guessing there is no sweet smell to it?
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 03:23 AM   #8
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High voltage converts O2 to O3 (ozone). In the higher levels of the atmosphere, Ozone is a handy molecule, acting to bounce a lot of the UV radiation from the sun back into space. At lower levels it acts as a dangerous pollutant present in car exhaust, around power stations etc. It's a greenhouse gas down here at ground level and one of the components of smog.

The smell could simply be from what you use when you wash/dry your clothes. Try changing washing liquid/softeners. OR it could be ozone production from the high voltage in the static.

I'm not a big boffin on electricity terms so "voltage" might be the wrong term but you know what I mean.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 03:46 AM   #9
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You were pretty close, Chundles

The oxygen is broken down by high electric fields. Electric fields are measured in voltage drop divided by distance, not just voltage. Higher fields drop a large voltage over a short distance, and vice versa.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 10:31 PM   #10
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Isnt static that stuff thats on the front of the TV screens two thats is like a bee when you move your hand across it?
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 10:44 PM   #11
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static is fun to play with. Take velex blankets, run em all around, make the room completely dark, wiggle them apart, and watch the fireworks! (it gives a minor "static" scent for me..)

Is this really how i must amuse myself
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 10:54 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chundles
High voltage converts O2 to O3 (ozone). In the higher levels of the atmosphere, Ozone is a handy molecule, acting to bounce a lot of the UV radiation from the sun back into space. At lower levels it acts as a dangerous pollutant present in car exhaust, around power stations etc. It's a greenhouse gas down here at ground level and one of the components of smog.<snip>
I vote Ozone.

BTW, ozone can also be used as a sterilizer, and is used to sterilize water, laundry, medical instruments, etc, etc. It's used to clean water that aquatic animals live in too, though for all of these applications it's metered out with special equipment.

Your nose has just been sterilized.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:17 PM   #13
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I smell the smell too. It is not a smell like an oh-I haven't washed my clothes in a week-smell or an oh-theres-that-burrito-i-had-for-lunch-smell, but there is a distinct static smell. Nothing to do with washing powder or anything, it just is. It probably is ozone, however i only have an 80% in chemistry so I really have no idea.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:18 PM   #14
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Yeah, definately ozone. Right now we're working on a tesla coil in my phyics class and after we run it for a minute, the entire place smells of ozone. It smells pretty good in moderation, but this just stinks.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:20 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingsly
Simple. The positively charged ions attract the ozone in the upper troposphere which, on their way down, bind with the heavier CFC's that people spew out of their spray deodorant cans. Once they reach sea level the ozone is completely broken down into two highly unstable parts. The negatively charged half binds with the statically charged item and the positive side is attracted to latex paint, particularly mint green, and breaks down further into protons and electrons that proceed to do absolutely nothing because I have know idea what I'm talking about.
Man that was funny

I know what you mean about the smell, but I dunno why it smells.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:22 PM   #16
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Maybe we should invest millions of dollars on researching this pointless mystery.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:25 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Felldownthewell
I smell the smell too. It is not a smell like an oh-I haven't washed my clothes in a week-smell or an oh-theres-that-burrito-i-had-for-lunch-smell, but there is a distinct static smell. Nothing to do with washing powder or anything, it just is. It probably is ozone, however i only have an 80% in chemistry so I really have no idea.
If you had an 80% in Chemistry down here you'd know what you were talking about. Bloody tough work to get 80% in any Uni/High School courses here. A passing mark is 50% which represents that you satisfy the requirements of the course and are untroubled by most questions.
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:26 PM   #18
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It's definitely ozone. It's the same thing that you smell sometimes after a strong lightning storm (for the same reasons too, since all lightning is is big-time static electricity)
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Old Mar 14, 2006, 11:47 PM   #19
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I know exactly what smell you mean.. it's almost a metallic smell
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Old Mar 15, 2006, 08:51 AM   #20
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Ah, just take more showers.
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