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Revision A, September 30, 1985

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Description / Abstract:

This document specifies the electrical characteristics of the unbalanced voltage and the balanced voltage digital interface circuits, normally implemented in integrated circuit (IC) technology. These circuits shall be employed for the interchange of serial digital binary signals between and among Data Terminal Equipment (DTE) and Data Circuit Terminating Equipment (DCE) or in any interconnection of binary signals between physically separated equipment, regardless of the type of information, such as digitized voice or data, that is represented by the binary signals.

The technical parameters promulgated by this document represent, in general, minimum interoperability and performance characteristics which may be exceeded in order to satisfy specific requirements. Additional nonstandard interface characteristics may also be implemented to satisfy specific interoperability requirements, provided that a basic capability exists to interoperate with a standard interface as stated in this document.

This document does not specify other characteristics of the DTE/DCE interface, such as signal quality, and clock/data phase relationship, essential for satisfactory operation of the interconnected equipment. Those standards are contained in MIL-STD-188-100 and MIL-STD-188-200.

This document shall be used in the design, installation, and operation of new communications facilities for both the long haul and tactical systems. This document shall be applicable to data, timing or clock, and control circuits employed at the interface between equipment where the information being conveyed is in the form of binary signals at the direct current (dc) baseband level. This document shall also be applicable to alarm and control circuits that are not directly related to data or timing.

This document shall apply to teletypewriters, data terminals, the dc side of signal conversion equipment, both terminal and line side of cryptographic or cryptographic control equipment, digitized voice equipment, and remotely operated equipment where the interface is at the dc baseband. This document shall be applicable at all signaling rates regardless of the type of transmission medium used, e.g., a nominal 4 kilohertz (kHz) channel derived by frequency division multiplexing (FDM), a nominal 48 kHz channel derived by FDM, a channel derived by time division multiplexing (TDM), or a fiber optic or metallic wire connection. Figure 1 depicts a block diagram of a data terminal subsystem as an example to illustrate where the digital interface applies. Figure 1 shows data and timing circuits but does not show control circuits.

Any or all of the equipment of the terminal subsystem may be integrated and combined in a single piece of equipment. When combined in a single piece of equipment, this document does not apply to internal equipment connections.

Information on the interrelationship of this document with FED-STD-1020A, FED-STD-1030A and other low level digital interface standards is given in Appendix D. FIGURE 1. Block Diagram of data terminal subsystem. This document does not apply to digital transmission subsystems employing specialized non-binary waveforms for transmission, Standards for these types of subsystems are under consideration and will be published in another document of the MIL-STD-188 series.

It is not intended that existing equipment and facilities be immediately converted to comply with the requirements of this document. New systems and those systems undergoing major modification or rehabilitation shall comply with the standards contained in this document subject to the applicable requirements of current procurement regulations.

The parameters and other requirements specified in this document are mandatory system standards (see Appendix A) if the word "shall" is used in connection with the parameter value or requirement under consideration. Nonmandatory design objectives are indicated by parentheses after a standardized parameter value or by the word "should" in connection with the parameter value or requirement under consideration. For a definition of the terms "System Standard" and "Design Objective" see Federal Standard (FED-STD) 1037.