AS9120B, ISO 9001:2015, and FAA AC 0056B ACCREDITED

Everything You Need to Know About MIL-STD 810

MIL-STD items are generally considered more reliable due to the numerous requirements that must be followed during production. One such standard is U.S. MIL-STD-810, which is an extremely important specification that helps define the environmental design and durability of the equipment. In this blog, we will discuss the contents and scope of MIL-STD-810 so you can better understand the items produced under its purview.

The MIL-STD-810 document is formally titled Environmental Engineering Considerations and Laboratory Tests, which hints at its objective. The standard's origin goes back to WWII when the Army Air Force first required new equipment to be tested under simulated environmental conditions. It went on to be formalized in the 1960s when the United States Air Force added supplemental documentation that helped describe the various tests that aerospace and ground equipment should be subjected to. The document continued to develop as a tri-service effort between engineers from the U.S. Army, Air Force, and Navy.

The standard applies to essentially any piece of equipment that would be exposed to various environmental conditions during normal operation. Such situations to which the equipment is exposed include temperature extremes, water in the form of rain and humidity, fungi, corrosive materials, acceleration, shock, vibration, and more. The data produced by the laboratory tests help the defense logistics agency and commanders choose the next generation of equipment.

Part one of MIL-STD-810 defines the purpose of environmental stress testing to predict the equipment's reaction and lifespan. It also describes what conditions are not addressed by the testing mandate, including nuclear threats, EMI, lightning, chemical weapons, and more. Additionally, part one of the text defines the general sequence of steps a manufacturer should follow when testing the equipment, including the calibration of sensors, facility setup, recording procedures, and derivation of data once obtained.

Part two gives explicit guidance on test design. Some methods are thus explained:

  • Test Method 500.5 (Low Pressure): This test helps simulate high altitude environments that cause low air pressure as well as rapid changes in pressure. Evaluation of the equipment should be done in three different phases of testing, including air transport, rapid decompression, and explosive decompression.
  • Test Method 501.5-502.5 (High & Low Temperature): These test methods help determine the equipment's response to temperature extremes in storage and operational phases. The high-temperature test exposes the test subject to a temperature range from 86 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit, while the low-temperature test ranges from -6 to -60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  •  Test Method 504.1 (Fluid Contamination): Determining a piece of equipment's reaction to various fluid types is important because there is a high likelihood of exposure over an operational lifespan. Such fluids include hydraulics, cleaning, insecticides, disinfectants, coolants, and fire extinguishers. In general, the equipment should prove to be functional during both short and long-term exposure.
  • Test Method 505.5 (Solar Radiation): Since most recent conflicts that the United States has been involved with have occurred in arid environments close to the equator, it is important that new potential equipment show resistance to wear from solar radiation.
  • Test Method 514.6 (Vibration): Whether onboard an aircraft, bouncing in a HUMVEE, or being close in proximity to gunfire, it is common for military equipment to be exposed to vibration. As such, this test helps determine the equipment's ability to withstand vibration at different levels while maintaining proper function.

As you can tell, products that meet military standard specifications tend to be of a higher quality. If you are looking for a reputable supplier of MIL-STD components, including those which meet the 810 standards, check out our parts catalogs at  Aviation Domain 360. As a premium distributor of NSN, aviation, and MIL-STD products, we are confident that our team can help you find the exact part you need for your operations. With our end-to-end customer service approach and 15 minute or less quotes, we guarantee that the purchasing process will be streamlined and stress-free.


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