CEN Guide to the Use of Character Sets in EuropeTC 304

8-bit Character Sets - ISO/IEC 10646

Current edition

ISO/IEC 10646-1:1993
Information technology - Universal Multiple-Octet Coded Character Set (UCS) - Part 1: Architecture and Basic Multilingual Plane (first edition).


ISO/IEC 10646 specifies a multiple-octet coded character set, the UCS, that is applicable to the representation, transmission, interchange, processing, storage, input and presentation of the written form of the languages of the world as well as additional symbols. It uses a coding system different from that specified in ISO/IEC 2022, but it provides mechanisms in accordance with ISO/IEC 2022:

Tutorial guidance

ISO/IEC 10646 is planned as a standard in multiple parts, of which only part 1 has so far been published. In its full form a four-octet coding (32 bits) will be required, but a two-octet (16 bit) coding is specified that covers use of the Basic Multilingual Plane given in Part 1.

Another part of the Guide to the Use of Character Sets in Europe contains a detailed description to the architecture and content of ISO/IEC 10646 (UCS)

To Top of 8-Bit Guide