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The Cable Chronicles: The History of the MIL-SPEC

Monday, June 8, 2020

Have you ever watched a rocket take off and wonder how the insides don't get a fried from the heat of the engines or have you ever seen footage of a tank taking fire and have it still remain functional? Then you are definitely seeing MIL-SPEC wire and cable in action. 

In fields such as the military and aerospace industry, it is important that all equipment used is up to code, safe to use, and, most importantly, durable, and that is what Allied Wire and Cable's MIL-SPEC wire and cables are all about. 

What are MIL-SPEC requirements for?

MIL-SPECs, or Military Specifications, is actually a term referring to the standard used to help achieve objectives in The United States Military. In a job as important as the military or the aerospace industry, it is imperative that all equipment meets very specific requirements such as commonality, reliability, the total cost of ownership, and compatibility with logistics systems. Allied Wire and Cable's line of MIL-SPEC wire and cable meet these requirements and can be applied to a very wide range of categories including aerospace, shipboard, hook-up, communications, and many more. But in order to understand the true importance of these standards, it is also important to acknowledge where these standards originated from. 

The F22-Raptor contains MIL-SPEC wire and cables that remain functional at low and high temperatures as well as high altitudes. 

Origins of The MIL-SPEC

In the Second World War, many of The Allies' military standards did not match one another, making it difficult for The Allies, specifically The British and The United States, to share equipment and machinery with each other. So after The Second World War, MIL-SPEC standardization was created and, with it, many benefits, including the ability to swap out vehicle subsystems in the highly likely event that they were to be damaged in combat. However, while this standardization did bring benefits, there were some who sat it as restrictive. 

The M1A1 Abrams tank relies on MIL-SPEC wire and cable in order to remain functional even in combat. 

MIL-SPEC in Modern Times

It has been argued that a large number of standards, nearly 30,000 by 1990, imposed unnecessary restrictions, increased cost to contractors, and impeded the incorporation of the latest technology. So, in response to these criticisms, in 1994, the DOD, run by Secretary of Defense William Perry at the time, issued a memorandum that prohibited the use of most defense standards without special permission from the government, and many defense standards were subsequently canceled. 

With all that being said, many providers of different equipment, such as Allied Wire and Cable, provide products that still meet very specific, Military level standards so as to ensure durability and functionality no matter the hazards that may come upon it. 





Filed Under: Cable Chronicles Tagged With wire and cable , mil-spec

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