MIL-STD-810 Low Pressure (Altitude) Testing

mil-std-810 low pressure

MIL-STD-810 Low Pressure (Altitude) testing is performed to evaluate equipment’s ability withstand exposures to low pressures.  These pressures may occur while the equipment is in storage, logistic transport, tactical transport, or actual operation.  This method (500.6) is one of twenty-nine laboratory environmental tests in the standard.

Low Pressure (Altitude) Procedures

The Low Pressure method is comprised of four testing procedures.  Dependent on requirements and the Life Cycle Environmental Profile (LCEP) of the equipment to be tested, one or more procedures can be performed.  

Procedure I – Storage/Air Transportation is in intended for equipment that will be transported by air or stored at high altitudes.  For ground transport and storage, 15,000 ft. (4,572m) is the accepted maximum standard test altitude.  This same value is accepted as a standard pressure for pressurized aircraft altitude testing.

Procedure II – Operation/Air Carriage is to be performed to evaluate equipment in operational modes at low pressure.  The equipment is placed in an environmental chamber and brought to the desired pressure and temperature at which point tests are performed to ensure that the Unit Under Test (UUT) can perform as designed in all modes of operation.

Procedure III – Rapid Decompression is used to determine if rapid decreases could result in a rupture or other malfunction of the UUT that would cause potential harm to the aircraft in which it is being transported in or personnel in the area. 

This test procedure starts with an initial chamber pressure of 8,000 ft. (2,438m) (10.9 psia or 75.2 kPa) and a final chamber pressure of 40,000 ft. (12,192m) (2.73 psia or 18.8 kPa).  The decompression between these two pressure levels is to be accomplished in not more than 15 seconds.

Procedure IV – Explosive Decompression is to be performed as Procedure III except that decompression time is 0.1 seconds.

MIL-STD-810 Requirements for Tailoring

Proper test and evaluation as defined in MIL-STD-810 Low Pressure (Altitude) requires tailoring.  This tailoring should consider a complete Whole Life Assessment of environmental stressors likely to be encountered by the materiel in question.  Obviously, these stresses will vary greatly dependent on the platform for which it is designed.  Equipment designed for the exterior of an aircraft will have very different LCEP than equipment designed for a ground vehicle engine compartment.

Once this study has been completed, appropriate test methods, procedure selections, and test parameters can be established and documented in a Test and Evaluation Master Plan (TEMP).  These parameters can then be used in the creation of a Detailed Environmental Test Plan (DETP).  The DETP should also contain functional and operational tests that are to be performed before, during, and after chamber testing.  

Detailed Environmental Test Plan Templates

CVG Strategy offers EZ Test Plan Templates for MIL-STD environmental (climatic/dynamic) and EMI/EMC test documentation.  Our Detailed Environmental Test Plans (DETP)s are written as specified in Department of Defense standard MIL-STD-810 Task 405.  They are available for specific applications such as Ground Mobile, Ground Stationary, and Shipboard Controlled, Shipboard Uncontrolled, and Aircraft Military.

These DETPs include appropriate methods, such as MIL-STD-810 Low Pressure (Altitude) Method 500 addendums for product specific information, test labels for photo identification and data sheets for collection of required data. Profile (LCEP). 

Our Electromagnetic Interference Test Plans are written as specified in MIL-STD-461.  They contain the test methodology, addendums for product specific information, test labels for photo identification and data sheets.  These plans are available for procedures listed in MIL-STD-461 and are also available for MIL-STD-1275, MIL-STD-704, and MIL-STD-1399-300. 

Custom Test Plans are also available for applications not covered in the EZ Test Plan offerings.  These plans can be written for any number of applications and their relevant standards.

MIL-STD-810 Training Classes

CVG Strategy MIL-STD-810 classes will provide you with the ability to develop and conduct an environmental test program.  Our two-day course not only provides you with valuable information about climatic and dynamic test methods but also includes training in the methodology to correctly apply test tailoring relevant to the test item’s expected life cycle. 

This course is available online or onsite.  Ample time is available for questions and comments so that participants are encouraged to keep engaged.  Check here for our online Training Registration Schedule.

Jamie Hamilton

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