Alan Freedman -- The Computer Language Company - Computer Desktop Encyclopedia
Computer Desktop Encyclopedia
Longest-Running Tech Reference on the Planet

A CDE Definition

You'll love The Computer Desktop Encyclopedia (CDE) for Tech Term of the Day (TTOD)


zinc whiskers

See metal whiskers.

metal whiskers

Microscopic filaments of metal such as zinc and tin that "grow" out of coated metal surfaces. In particular, zinc whiskers can be dislodged from the metal tracks of raised flooring, migrate via heating and air conditioning ducts into electronic equipment and cause short circuits if they settle onto circuit board surfaces. For more information on metal whiskers, visit

Zinc Whiskers
The bright filaments are zinc whiskers emerging out of a scratch in the zinc plating on the underside of a 10 year-old raised floor tile from a computer room. According to Peter Bush, consultant to the International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (, there were some two million whiskers on this tile. (Image courtesy of Peter Bush, State University of New York at Buffalo.)

Personal Use Only

Before/After Your Search Term
ZIF socketzine
Ziff Davis benchmarksZinga
Ziff Davis EnterpriseZINK
Ziff Davis
Ziff Davis MediaZip disk
ZiffNetZip drive
ZigBeeZIP file
Zilogzip tone
zinc airzipped

Terms By Topic
Click any of the following categories for a list of fundamental terms.
Computer Words You Gotta KnowSystem design
Job categoriesUnix/Linux
Interesting stuffPersonal computers
InternetIndustrial Automation/Process Control
Communications & networkingAssociations/Standards organizations
HistoryDesktop publishing
ProgrammingHealthcare IT
System design