I have a Raspeberry Pi in a small plastic enclosure. The whole thing smells intensely of some chemical I normally associate with burned electronics. It is quite choking. Any ideas what it might be? And is it dangerous? [I do not know the plastics involved - Straight of the shelf, not powered up]

  • $\begingroup$ Is your setup generating lots of heat? If its a low weight plastic polymer you might be getting decomposition products of the plastic breaking down. $\endgroup$
    – J. Ari
    May 30 '17 at 14:24
  • $\begingroup$ @J.Ari No. Straight of the shelf, not powered up. $\endgroup$ May 30 '17 at 14:31
  • $\begingroup$ I upvoted the question because I don't have any leads if this is off the shelf packaging so I am also curious if others could shed some light on this. I would edit your question to clarify with the info you gave to my comment so that the questions is more accurate to what your situation is. $\endgroup$
    – J. Ari
    May 30 '17 at 14:33
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ 'New in box' generally has a smell from outgassing plasticizer and molding compounds from the enclosure. These are lower molecular weight compounds in the plastic. Heating said plastic up both (1) releases more plasticizer more quickly, and (2) starts breaking down the long chain polymers and releasing the short chain remains. Add in a little trace elements (Na, Cl, ...) and you get a similar smell between the two situations. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    May 30 '17 at 16:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.