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capacitor requirements

Specifying a Capacitor to Meet MIL-SDT-704/DO-160 Power Hold-up Requirements

Aug. 1, 2022
Determine how much capacitance is needed to support an application's unique power hold-up needs and how to choose the right aerospace-grade SWaP-optimized capacitor to ensure compliance with MIL-STD-704 or DO-160.

Today’s aircraft and airborne vehicles have evolved significantly from their origins. They contain a suite of advanced navigation, communication, and display systems. This is particularly true of military aircraft which use cutting-edge technologies that add capabilities and improve effectiveness, performance, and safety. As these advanced systems are increasingly incorporated into modern avionics systems, airborne electric power systems have evolved to support them.

In avionics, these technologies are referred to as utilization equipment. Utilization equipment is defined as any equipment which receives power from the aircraft’s electric power system.

Some types of utilization equipment will not properly function if their supply of electric power is interrupted. In these cases, power hold-up functionality is required to ensure that certain critical systems remain in operation during certain power interruption events.

MIL-STD-704 and DO-160 are standards that designers use to determine the required power hold-up capability of a system. Power hold-up is achieved by using capacitors.

This whitepaper will help designers of power supplies and/or airborne systems determine how much capacitance is needed to support an application’s unique power hold-up needs and how to choose the right aerospace grade SWaP (Space, Weight, and Power) optimized capacitor to ensure compliance with MIL-STD-704 and/or DO-160.

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