MIL-STD-810 Test Method 511.5 Explosive Atmosphere

MIL-STD-810 Test Method 511.5 –
Explosive Atmosphere


Quick look:

  • Tests for explosive atmosphere
  • Includes two procedures
  • Used most in military applications



About MIL-STD-810 Method 511

Method 511 addresses the ability to withstand an explosive atmosphere. There are two procedures, each with a slightly different purpose.

The first procedure determines if a product will operate in an explosive atmosphere without igniting the vapors. This is important in aircraft or confined spaces where there isn’t much ventilation, creating the potential for a mixture of fuel and fuel air.

The test makes sure there isn’t an ignition source in the environment. To do this test, the article goes into a chamber with a hexane and air fuel mixture, and the temperature is elevated. Then the equipment is fully operated by activating some switches and turning things on and off to see if there are any sparks or ignition sources that ignite the fuel air mixture. The latter is done remotely to avoid getting inside the chamber. This applies primarily to military applications. The oil and gas industry uses a completely different spec, ATEX, to test for explosive atmosphere.

The second procedure tests to determine if the article will come apart if there’s fuel inside the unit and an ignition source.