Enhanced environmental testing for aerospace suppliers

A fast rate of change equipment has been added to TÜV SÜD Product Service temperature cycling facility for aerospace companies wanting to conform to RTCA DO-160.

TÜV SÜD Product Service has launched its new fast rate of change facility to help aerospace equipment manufacturers meet the requirements of RTCA DO-160 for environmental testing of avionics electronic, electrical and mechanical systems.

Manufacturers of commercial aircraft equipment must meet the minimum standards of environmental test conditions and procedures of RTCA DO-160. The newly upgraded TÜV SÜD facility includes a second fast rate of change test chamber that will increase capacity to minimise test waiting time and help manufacturers across the world decrease time to market for new equipment.

TÜV SÜD’s new facility will also cover a wider range of temperature fluctuations, in order to accurately replicate the rapid and extreme temperature variations experienced during flight, from -70C to +160C, with temperature change rates up to 10C per minute. The fast rate of change facility complements a comprehensive selection of environmental (such as climatic and vibration) and EMC tests (such as lightning and power supply) to deliver aerospace manufacturers the full range of avionics testing in a single location.

Martin Foley, Business Line Manager for Aerospace & Defence at TÜV SÜD Product Service, said: “Aerospace manufacturers must cope with the demands of a safety critical industry, where reliability is paramount but competition to deliver value for money is also a key driver. Our service will help them to ensure that their products achieve the right balance of reliability in extreme conditions, whilst complying with regulations and minimising time to market to remain competitive.”

The test requirements of RTCA DO-160 are applicable to most types of commercial aircraft, including small aviation aircraft, helicopters, jumbo jets and supersonic aircraft. It covers a wide range of equipment, such as sensitive avionics and safety critical equipment, as well as in-flight entertainment and cabin systems. The standard sets out the minimum required environmental test conditions and procedures to assure the performance of avionic equipment in airborne environmental conditions, including temperature, altitude, shock, vibration and susceptibility to RF emissions.

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