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Environmental tests are used to verify a piece of equipment can withstand the rigors of harsh environments, for example:
- extremely high and low temperatures
- large, swift variations in temperature
- blown and settling sand and dust
- salt spray and salt fog
- very high or low humidity
- wet environments
- vibrations (airborne and structural)
- solar radiation
- high and low pressures (especially for aeronautical and space equipment)
- operating at angles (especially for marine, aeronautical and space equipment)
- electromagnetic interference (EMI)
Such tests are most commonly performed on equipment used in military, maritime, aeronautical and space applications. See Environmental test chambers for more information about environmental testing equipment.
Environmental test standards include
- MIL-STD-810, "Test Method Standard for Environmental Engineering Considerations and Laboratory Tests", presently (2010) version G, issued in 2009
- MIL-HDBK-2036, "Preparation of Electronic Equipment Specifications", issued 1999
- IEC 60068, "Environmental Testing", with many parts.
- IEC 60945, "Maritime navigation and radiocommunication equipment and systems - General requirements - Methods of testing and required test results", issued 2002 and due for review in 2007
- RTCA DO-160, "Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment", first published in 1975
- MIL-STD-461, "Department of Defense Interface Standard: Requirements for the Control of Electromagnetic Interference Characteristics of Subsystems and Equipment (10 DEC 2007)", presently version F.