Environmental simulation test laboratory: MIL-STD 810

MIL-STD 810: Environmental simulation test laboratory

What is MIL-STD 810?

MIL-STD 810 is a comprehensive standard developed by the U.S. Department of Defence (DoD) for environmental simulation and durability testing of military equipment and systems. It is a collection of test methods specifically designed to simulate and quantify the effects of various environmental factors on equipment and systems. The standard covers a wide range of environmental conditions, including shock, vibration, temperature, humidity, salt spray, dust, and more.

What types of tests are performed?

MIL-STD 810 establishes a variety of specific tests to verify the environmental suitability and durability of equipment and systems. Test procedures vary depending on the specific requirements and operating conditions of the equipment being tested, but typically include:

  • Temperature testing: this involves exposing the equipment to extreme temperatures to test its performance and durability under these conditions.
  • Humidity tests: these tests are designed to evaluate the effects of high humidity on the materials and electronic components of the device.
  • Shock and vibration tests: these simulate the mechanical stresses to which the device might be subjected during transport or operation.
  • Sand and dust tests: these tests simulate the conditions under which the device is used in dusty or sandy environments to assess the impact on performance and durability.


Examples of the practical use of MIL-STD 810 in defense applications

A specific example of the application of MIL-STD 810 could be the testing of a communications system that is being installed on a combat aircraft. The system would have to be subjected to several tests, including temperature tests (to simulate conditions in the aircraft when fully operational), shock and vibration tests (to simulate stresses during take-off, flight, and landing), and humidity tests (to evaluate the effects of condensation and other sources of moisture).

Another practical example of the use of MIL-STD 810 is the testing of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), also known as drones. These UAVs are often exposed to extreme environmental conditions, including high and low temperatures, high humidity, dust, and vibration, both in the air and on the ground.

Prior to deployment, these devices must undergo a series of tests in accordance with the MIL-STD 810 to ensure they will perform in real-world conditions. These tests may include, for example, high-temperature testing (to simulate operating conditions in different climates), dust and sand testing (to evaluate the effects of operations in deserts or dusty environments), acceleration testing (to simulate the forces encountered during take-off, in the air, and during landing), and humidity testing (to evaluate the effects of condensation and other sources of moisture).

Once UAVs pass these rigorous tests, manufacturers and end users have confidence that these devices will perform reliably under their intended operating conditions.

Another use case for MIL-STD 810 could be testing field laptops. These rugged devices are designed to be used in harsh, often hostile environments where they could be subjected to severe temperature fluctuations, dust, dirt, violent impacts and high stresses.

Under MIL-STD 810 testing, such a field laptop would be subjected to tests that evaluate its resistance to these conditions. For example, a thermal shock test could be conducted to ensure that the device remains functional during sudden temperature changes. A humidity test would verify that the device can operate in high humidity conditions, and dust and sand tests would assess the device's tightness and ability to function in dusty or sandy environments.

In addition, acceleration tests could also be conducted to assess the ruggedness of the laptop in the harsh conditions of military transport. Upon successful completion of these tests in accordance with the MIL-STD 810, the manufacturer can be confident that its product meets the requirements of the target environment and customers can be confident that the product will operate reliably under extreme conditions.

Another scenario in which the MIL-STD 810 is applied is the testing of portable satellite phones. These devices are designed to be used in extreme environmental conditions, such as remote military operations or rescue missions in remote areas.

For example, the MIL-STD 810 testing method would include shock tests to verify the device's resistance to mechanical shock, such as that caused by dropping it on hard surfaces. In addition, dust and moisture tests would be conducted to ensure that the device remains functional in dry, dusty or humid environments.

Another test could be a thermal shock test to verify that the device will still function in the face of sudden temperature changes that can occur in different climates. Finally, acceleration tests could be used to verify the stability of the device under the dynamic conditions that can occur during transportation.

These MIL-STD 810 tests help manufacturers ensure that their satellite phones can withstand the challenges they might face during their lifetime. At the same time, they give users confidence that they can rely on their devices when they need them most.

Who needs MIL-STD 810?

The MIL-STD 810 is an essential credential for all companies and organizations that design and manufacture equipment or systems for use in challenging environmental conditions. These include manufacturers of communications systems, weapons systems, vehicles, aerospace components, and many other products that must withstand high physical and environmental stresses.

As a testing laboratory, we offer this special service of providing accredited testing of product performance in accordance with MIL-STD 810. So, if you're a manufacturer looking to ensure that your product can withstand the rigors of the environment while meeting your customers' expectations, our MIL-STD 810 testing service is for you.

In addition, more and more companies in civilian industries, such as automotive, telecommunications, and aerospace, are also using the MIL-STD 810 to ensure the resilience and reliability of their products. This means that even if your focus is not in the defense sector, the benefits of MIL-STD 810 testing can be of great importance to the image of your product and the confidence of your customers.

Conclusion / Summary:

MIL-STD 810 is a comprehensive and versatile environmental testing standard that plays a central role in ensuring the performance and durability of military and civilian equipment. With its wide range of test methods and conditions, it enables manufacturers and test laboratories to simulate and quantify the effects of various environmental factors on products.

As a testing laboratory, we are proud to offer our expertise in MIL-STD 810. We can help you prove the quality of your products and ensure compliance with the standard's stringent requirements. We help you ensure the durability and reliability of your products in the real world, which ultimately builds customer confidence and strengthens your competitive position.

Whether your products are intended for military or civilian use, the MIL-STD 810 is a valuable seal of approval that underscores the ruggedness and reliability of your products. With our help, you can be confident that your products will pass the tough tests and be ready for the challenges of the field.

Till Schwermer, Head of Environmental Simulation Laboratory

Till Schwermer

Till Schwermer

Head of Environmental
Simulation Laboratory

Till Schwermer

Contact us! Phone: +49 (0)40 709 73 76 - 0 or e-mail: