What is Climatic Testing?

May 10, 2017

Climatic testing is a type of environmental stress testing that recreates in a controlled setting all environmental/weather conditions a product could conceivably encounter. This is done not only to ensure compliance with any applicable regulatory standards, but also to determine the reliability of a product and its potential longevity. Products that undergo climatic testing will perform more reliably and be easier to bring to new markets.

NTS’ extensive climatic testing capabilities give manufacturers an accurate picture of how their product will perform in any environment. Our engineers can design a testing program that meets your requirements. Contact our office directly for assistance.

Types of Climatic Testing

Climatic testing is a broad category covering a range of simulations and testing programs. It may include:

  • Temperature and humidity testing: NTS performs temperature and humidity testing in a variety of chambers to accommodate products of any size. We can provide static testing at a constant temperature/humidity level or thermal cycling to determine how a product reacts when exposed to rapid environmental shifts. Thermal cycling is frequently used to measure the reliability of a solder joint. Static testing, or steady state testing is often used to determine high and low ground survival temps when testing aerospace equipment.
  • Corrosive atmosphere testing: Salt spray and salt fog testing measure the ability of protective coatings and electronic components to withstand corrosive environments. For this type of testing, we use a sealed chamber in which a product or component is exposed to an atomized sodium chloride solution. One of the more common tests we perform involves subjecting a product to a 5% salt solution for 720 continuous hours, ensuring compliance with ISO 9227:2012 standards.
  • Sand and dust testing: Sand and dust testing is especially important for electronics used in military ground vehicles and other delicate applications. In our facilities, we can test components as large as 8 ft3, simulating winds up to 40 mph and temperatures in excess of 200˚F. Using the results of these tests, our clients can produce reliable ruggedized components that meet the MIL-STD-810 standard. We can also perform dust explosion testing to OHSA, NFPA and other standards.

Other tests we provide involve wind and rain, hail impact, solar radiation, altitude and other simulations. We can combine our testing programs with shock and vibration simulation for a more accurate picture of the real-world conditions your product will face. Contact one of our engineers to explore your options.

Benefits of Climatic Testing

Climatic testing is often a requirement when bringing military, aerospace and other components to market. Testing is also essential for demonstrating that your product meets end-user expectations. For example, through climatic testing, manufacturers can determine a product’s high and low operating temps. By sweeping through a wide range of climatic conditions, it’s possible to pinpoint specific failure modes, reducing liability and improving overall product quality.

NTS provides climatic altitude testing for aerospace and aviation manufacturers that meets RTCA DO-160 requirements. Other standards we frequently work with include MIL-STD-202 and MIL-STD-883, as well as industry and manufacturer-specific programs for OEMs. For more information, contact NTS by submitting a request for quotation online.


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