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SAE AS6135

2012 Edition, December 1, 2012

Complete Document

Interface Standard, Airborne EO/IR Systems, Data

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Product Details:

  • Revision: 2012 Edition, December 1, 2012
  • Published Date: December 2012
  • Status: Active, Most Current
  • Document Language: English
  • Published By: SAE International (SAE)
  • Page Count: 33
  • ANSI Approved: No
  • DoD Adopted: Yes

Description / Abstract:

This standard defines the data interfaces between a host aircraft ("platform") and an Electro-Optic/Infrared (EO/IR) sensor. These data interfaces cover various types of data including: imagery, metadata, command, status, and responses (CSR), geospatial postion, time, test and maintenance, and hand-controller. This standard does not cover mechanical or electrical interfaces.

Relationship Between Aircraft/Sensor Interfaces and SAE Standards

Figure 1 shows the relationship between the various interfaces and the various SAE standards. AS6129 (electrical) covers connectors, power, conductors, fiber optics, and some aspects of data transport. AS6135 (data) covers data (e.g., imagery, metadata, as well as CSR). AS6135 overlaps AS6129 in the area of protocols for data transport. AS6135 and AS6129 are closely bound together because building a system based on these standards is dependent on the requirements from both standards. Also, requirements put in one standard can impact the options for updating the other standard.

NOTE: Regarding Figure 1, SAE is drafting a standard (AS6165) to cover maintenance and test which will overlap both AS6129 and AS6135. SAE is also drafting a standard (AS6169) which will cover the mechanical interface. AS6169 will overlap AS6129 with regard to connectors.


The intent of this standard is to enhance interoperability, commonality, and interchangeability among equipment provided by various EO/IR suppliers and avionic systems. Adoption of this standard will improve procurement flexibility for acquisition, system integrators, and platform providers. Relevant platforms include fixed wing, rotary wing, UAS (except for micro-UAS), and lighter than air vehicles. The approach adopted to accomplish these intents includes utilizing the same interface standards used elsewhere in the end-to-end system. This standard is also intended to encourage the move away from sensors that use interlaced acquisition, transport and/or format, as well as analog interfaces.

The data interface is designed to facilitate the:

a. Interconnection between EO/IR sensor systems and the avionics systems hosted by the platform

b. Exchange of data and metadata between sensor systems and sensor data processors

c. Maintenance and test of EO/IR systems


This standard applies to all platforms and EO/IR sensors that interface with each other. AS6135 addressess turreted EO/IR sensor systems. Future revisions of AS6135 may address other EO/IR sensor systems such as pods. AS6135 covers sensors and platforms presently in concept development stages, future platforms, and sensor developments, and upgrades to legacy platforms. This standard is intended for use by procuring agencies and as a general guideline for industry.
AIA/NAS Aerospace Standards