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3U cPCI Board and Rack Family Satisfies Extreme Thermal Needs
CompactPCI, particularly in its 3U flavor, is no longer the new kid on the block in the military market. It’s paid its dues and is now fully accepted. MEN Micro has introduced a new, rugged 3U CompactPCI (cPCI) family consisting of two single board computers (SBCs) and a rack that provide reliable performance in temperatures as extreme as -40°C and +85°C. The new line includes the conduction-cooled F50C that easily fits into the new conduction-cooled rack (Model # 0701-0054). Both the F50P and F50C SBCs offer the choice of either powerful MPC8548 and MPC8543 PowerPC processors running at speeds up to 1.5 GHz as well as up to 2 Mbytes of SDRAM, 2 Mbyte non-volatile SRAM, 128K non-volatile FRAM and up to 16 Gbytes of flash solid-state disk storage.
Convection-cooled SBCs are fitted with tailor-made heat sinks necessary for their environmental requirements–up to +85°C. The conduction-cooled cPCI rack is an extremely robust, heat-dissipating enclosure designed for use in environments from -40° to +85°C (-40° to +185°F). It is IP-65-compliant, hermetically sealed against environmental impacts and uses wedge locks and MIL-C-38999 connectors to offer excellent vibration and shock resistance. Pricing starts at $1,637 for the F50C and $2,322 for the F50P. The conduction-cooled rack is $5,473.
MEN Micro, Ambler, PA. (215) 542-9575. [www.menmicro.com].
VME SBC Boasts Latest Low-Power Core2 Duo Processor
Perhaps the greatest triumph of VME is its capability to maintain backward compatibility while remaining suited to incorporating new computing elements as they evolve. Exemplifying this trend is Aitech Defense Systems’ new 6U VME SBC using Intel’s latest T7500 low-power, high-performance Merom Core 2 Duo dual core processors. The new C160 is designed for rugged, mission-critical mobile applications requiring exceptionally low power and high processing throughput.
The new single-slot C160 now offers clock frequencies up to 2.2 GHz for the high-performance version and 1.67 GHz for the low-power version, which draws only 25W. The new board also uses Intel’s Virtualization Technology (VT), enabling the board to run different applications simultaneously using multiple virtual partitions. The fully featured C160 incorporates a custom metal thermal management frame supporting an array of integral stiffeners for increased resistance against high shock and vibration. The board offers large memory arrays providing extensive volatile and non-volatile memory resources. These include up to 2 Gbytes fast DDR2 SDRAM operating at 667 MHz and up to 8 Gbytes of onboard flash disk (NAND Flash), with IDE controller eliminating the need for externally attached mass-storage media. OEM pricing for the C160 6U VME SBC starts at $6,050.
Aitech Defense Systems, Chatsworth, CA.
(888) 248-3248. [www.rugged.com].
Wide-Screen LCDs Support Multi Signal Operations.
Large, high-def displays are in demand everywhere these days including aircraft and ground vehicles. Avalex Technologies has released its newest line, the rugged and reliable Series 7 monitors. The wide screens come in 12, 14 and 22 inches. Historically, displays, like most televisions, have had an aspect ratio of 4:3. This means that the ratio of the width of the display screen to the height is 4 to 3. For wide-screen LCD monitors, the aspect ratio is 16:9 (or sometimes 16:10 or 15:9).
Avalex wide-screen LCD displays are useful for viewing multiple signals such as camera video or Electro-Optical/Infra-Red (EO/IR) signals. Also displayed are XGA (Extended Graphics Array), SXGA (Super XGA), UXGA (Ultra XGA), WSXGA+ (Wide SXGA plus), and WUXGA (Wide Ultra XGA) computer signals in wide-screen format, and displaying multiple windows side by side. The high-definition feature or option also uses a wide-screen aspect ratio. The Series 7 display line includes wide viewing angles and a number of standard options, such as high definition, touch screen, freeze and zoom video capability, heater glass for use in cold temperatures and video loop through.
Avalex Technologies, Pensacola, FL.
(850) 470-8464. [www.avalex.com].
Digital-Oscilloscope Series Delivers Sophisticated Features
Advances in test and measurement technologies have brought capabilities to the desktop that once required a rack of boards and chassis. An example along those lines is Agilent Technologies’ expanded line of digital-storage oscilloscopes (DSO), with six new models that comprise its next-generation 1000 Series. These new scopes offer bandwidths between 60 MHz and 200 MHz and deliver features normally found on more expensive scopes. The oscilloscopes are available with two or four channels, and each comes in a package that is just 5 inches deep and weighs less than 7 pounds.
All 1000 Series models are equipped with a bright LCD display that offers a sharper image and is visible from a much wider viewing angle than competitive scopes. And with up to 20 kpts of memory per channel, the 1000 Series allows engineers to use the full sample rate of the scope up to 8x longer than other scopes in its class. The scopes can display 23 automatic measurements–up to 21 simultaneously–including measurements from a built-in six-digit counter. Engineers can record and replay up to 1,000 occurrences of a trigger for easy identification of glitches and other anomalies. Agilent DSO1000A Series products are priced from $1,200 to $2,410 depending on configuration.
Agilent Technologies, Palo Alto, CA. (650) 752-5000. [www.agilent.com].
VXS Card Enables 1.3 TeraMAC/s Signal Processing
Multi-channel applications such as beamforming, Radar, SIGINT, COMINT and wireless communications have a seemingly endless appetite for high-speed data conversion. With that in mind TEK Microsystems has released its QuiXilica Atlas-V5 VXS product. The new Atlas-V5 provides eight channels of 12-bit 1 Gsps (Gigasamples per second) analog inputs streaming up to 12 Gbytes/s into three Xilinx Virtex 5 FPGAs in a single 6U VME/VXS slot. The Atlas-V5 is the first product to support 1 Gsps ADC devices with 12 bits of resolution.
Atlas-V5 uses eight 12-bit ADC digitizer channels each performing at up to 1.0 Gsps combined with three Xilinx Virtex-5 FPGAs. Each channel has an input bandwidth of 1.5 GHz, supporting operation up to the third Nyquist band, and uses a single ADC without interleaving. The front end FPGAs, typically SX95T devices, each accept four channels of input data for initial processing. The outputs of the front end FPGAs are then combined in the back end FPGA for additional processing and output via the VXS backplane or front panel QSFP fiber optic links at aggregate rates up to 3.75 Gbytes/s. Like all of the QuiXilica-V5 products, the Atlas-V5 is available for a wide range of operating environments, including rugged air- and conduction-cooled for deployed applications.
TEK Microsystems, Chelmsford, MA. (978) 244-9200. [www.tekmicro.com].
High-Def Video XMC Has JPEG2000 Compression
High-definition video shared over IP-based networks will define the next generation of the U.S. military’s situation awareness and command/control technologies. Facilitating that trend, Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing offers the XMC-280, an interface for high-definition video with JPEG2000 compression. The XMC-280 provides an open standards-based high-performance solution for capturing, compressing, decompressing and displaying two channels of video up to 1080p and 1920 x 1200 resolutions. Designed for demanding military video applications, the XMC-280 facilitates the design of systems that require the distribution or recording of video such as those in situational awareness applications.
The XMC-280 features: two video Inputs (each can be Digital DVI, Analogue RGB or PAL/NTSC composite) each up to 1920 x 1200 at 60 Hz, and two DVI-D digital outputs. Captured video is compressed using a high-performance FPGA-based JPEG2000 algorithm, or transmitted over PCIe interface uncompressed. Two stereo channels (or four mono channels) of audio are provided for input/output (16-bit 48 kHz, WAV and PCM encoding). Pricing for the XMC-280 starts at $5,000.
Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing, Leesburg, VA.
(703) 779-7800. [www.cwcembedded.com].
VXS Board Serves up Dual Freescale 8641Ds
VXS has established itself as a “here and now” technology for bringing switched fabric performance into the infrastructure of VME. Mercury Computer Systems offers the Ensemble 5000 Series VXS HCD5220 Dual 8641D Dual-Core Processing Module. The HCD5220 is the first of several new products from the VXS Ensemble 5000 Series product family designed to extend embedded, high-performance computing to a sensor-networked environment, enabling rapid access to critical information from distributed sensors via the Converged Sensor Network (CSN) Architecture.
The Ensemble VXS HCD5220 is rich with architectural innovations and industry firsts. The HCD5220 combines the high-performance computing power of two Freescale 8641D PowerPC processors with dual PMC/XMC mezzanine sites, creating the ultimate balance of I/O and processing per slot. The HCD5220 includes key architectural elements from Mercury’s CSN Architecture. Each PowerPC processor in a large multi-board system is paired with several internal and external Gbit Ethernet interfaces, allowing any processor to communicate with any other processor for system control, as well as with customer-configured external networked resources. The Ethernet network is in addition to the 3.125 Gbaud Serial RapidIO switch topology for application data. The VXS HCD5220 module is available now. Entry-level versions in volume start at under $10,000.
Mercury Computer Systems,
PrAMC Features 1.2 GHz EP80579 Processor, 8 Gbytes of Memory
The AMC mezzanine form factor, as well as its cousin PrAMC, has established a strong market presence following in the footsteps of PMC. JumpGen Systems has rolled out the PRM-110, a processor AdvancedMC (PrAMC) featuring the Intel EP80579 Integrated Processor with Intel QuickAssist Technology and up to 4 Gbytes of ECC DDR2 memory. The PRM-110 supports up to 5 GigE links including 2 Front Panel and 3 routed to the AMC connector. The PRM-110 may be deployed with 600 MHz, 1.066 GHz, or 1.2 GHz processors to serve as coprocessor or host processor for embedded communication applications. The Intel EP80579 is available with integrated accelerators that support Intel QuickAssist Technology through software packages provided by Intel. The software drivers enable acceleration of cryptographic and packet processing for VPN/firewall and unified threat management, wireless and WIMAX access applications, and SMB and home network attached storage applications.
The board features up to 8 Gbytes of persistent memory, a PCI Express x4 interface to AMC.1, Type 4 and several Gbit Ethernet options. The card is available in both full and mid-size AMC configurations for AdvancedTCA (ATCA), MicroTCA and proprietary architecture system. The PRM-110 is shipping to select customers this quarter and will be generally available in Q3 2009.
JumpGen Systems, Carlsbad, CA. (760) 931-7800. [www.jumpgen.com].
5.7-inch Touch Panel Computer Is Fanless
The combination of touch panel technology and the ability of processors to handle sophisticated touch screen graphic interfaces has transformed the notion of what a military computer terminal can do. Feeding that trend, the Industrial Automation Group of Advantech introduces a lower cost version of their current TPC-66T 5.7-inch QVGA TFT LCD touch panel computer. The TPC-66T-E2BE version comes with 64 colors, 320 x 240 resolution and an Intel low power consuming CPU and heat sink to achieve a unique fanless design.
The low-voltage processor (Intel XScale PXA270 312 MHz) with an LED backlight is very power efficient, and with its 320 x 240 resolution, it provides a clear display for its compact size. Furthermore, the TPC-66T-E2BE provides multiple standard communication ports (2 x RS-232, 1 x RS-485, 1 x Ethernet, 1 x USB) allowing connectivity with a variety of peripherals.
The TPC-66T-E2BE supports Microsoft Windows CE and comes with an NEMA4/IP65 front panel resilient enough to withstand the harsh conditions of any industrial environment.
Advantech, Irvine, CA. (949) 789-7178. [www.advantech.com].
Instrument Duo Does Precise Temp and Battery Measurement
Military portable gear and vehicles are relying more and more on battery power. Developing such systems requires precise measurements. Data Translation feeds those needs with more powerful versions of its VOLTpoint and TEMPpoint instruments for battery and temperature measurement. By incorporating proprietary ISO-Channel technology, users can get unprecedented accuracy in analog voltage readings regardless of the environmental conditions.
ISO-Channel technology offers increased reliability over older relay front end designs prone to system failure, by implementing a separate DC/DC Converter on each 24-bit A/D converter for all 48 channels. VOLTpoint and TEMPpoint measurement instruments have ISO-Channel floating front ends with each input connected to an individual, floating A/D converter with onboard signal conditioning. VOLTpoint is a precision measurement instrument designed and newly enhanced for measuring a wide range of voltage inputs of +/-10V, +/-100V and +/-400V. TEMPpoint is a series of temperature measurement instruments designed for high accuracy and industrial robustness. These instruments allow direct thermocouple, RTD, and precision voltage or resistance measurements with a PC. Pricing for VOLTpoint and TEMPpoint begins at $3,195 and both are available immediately in USB and Ethernet Versions.
Data Translation, Marlboro, MA.
(508) 481-3700. [www.datatranslation.com].
Quadrature Counter Packs 4-Axes Support in a Single Chip
Military applications requiring precise motion control and measurement–like robotics and UAVs for example–are looking for more integrated solutions. LSI Computer Systems has introduced the LS7566R, the latest addition to its incremental encoder interface family of ICs. It provides an efficient hardware solution for extracting position data directly from the quadrature outputs of as many as four encoder units. The input quadrature clocks from encoders are digitally filtered for elimination of noise and errors arising out of encoder dither, providing a high level of reliability.
Communications to host processors are facilitated by a 3-state octal bus and an interrupt protocol with selections from a pool of marker flags. LS7566R includes four identical channels, each featuring 24-bit up/down counter for accumulating encoder positional data. Also provided is a 24-bit input register along with its companion 24-bit comparator for target position. The maximum count frequency is 40 MHz. Operating voltage is 3V to 5.5V. The LS7566R is available in a 48-pin TSSOP package. Unit price in 1k quantity is $5.80.
LSI Computer Systems, Melville, NY.
(631) 271-0400. [www.lsicsi.com].
Rugged Direct-Spray Enclosure Supports 3U Boards
The new generation of ground vehicles, UAVs and rotor wing aircraft designs is sensitive to size, weight, power and cost. With that in mind, SprayCool offers MPE-3U, a 3U form factor of its scalable MPE line of direct-spray rugged enclosures. The MPE-3U weighs in at only 18 lbs, but is rugged enough to provide environmental isolation to both commercial grade and rugged 3U cards. Building on the legacy of flexibility inherent in all SprayCool enclosures, the MPE-3U allows customers to deploy commercial-grade or legacy electronics in the same enclosure.
In the case of electronics cards designed for air or conduction cooling, this translates directly into lower costs and faster development cycles for integrators and their military customers. The MPE-3U enclosure can scale above 7 slots and is designed to meet industry standard designs for 3U VPX, cPCI/cPCIe and VME-64X and proprietary electronics boards, offering significantly more cooling capability per slot (up to 100 W) than enclosures using lower capacity cooling technologies such as air or conduction cooling. The operating environment can range from temperatures of -55° to +71°C, and altitudes of up to 55,000 ft, even in unpressurized compartments.
SprayCool, Liberty Lake, WA. (509) 232-2600. [www.spraycool.com].
Microstep Motor Integrates Encoder, Driver and Controller
The number of small motors in a complex system like an aircraft is often unappreciated. Arcus Technology has developed an all-in-one NEMA 11 microstep motor with driver, controller and encoder integrated into the motor’s back cap, minimizing external electronics and wiring. The DMX-K-SA-11 stepper motor uses Renishaw’s magnetic AM256 magnetic encoder chip for real-time position verification. The small package size of the magnetic chip encoder allows the motor to stay within the 1.1-inch-square form factor of the NEMA 11 standard. The new DMX-K-SA-11 stepper motor is ideal for size-sensitive applications requiring open-loop microstep motion with real-time position confirmation.
The integrated DMX-K-SA-11 is a 16-microstep driver that is capable of full, 1/2, 1/4, or 1/16 microsteps in three different stack sizes. With an operational range of -40° to 125°C, high resistance to shock and vibration, and rotational speed capability up to 60,000 rpm, the AM256 combines ruggedness and performance needed for harsh environments.
Arcus Technology, Livermore, CA.
(925) 373-8800. [www.arcus-technology.com].
VME Replacement Board Offers Processing Boost.
A strength of VME’s legacy is that there’s a wide array of vendors supporting obsolescence issues. A drop-in replacement for the end-of-life SBS VR7 VME board from Xembedded is now available, but with much more processor power. The XVME-689-VR7 is a powerful, very low-power single-slot 6U single board computer with the same VMEbus P1 and P2 pin outs as the company’s VR7. The XVME-689-VR7 VMEbus processor integrates an Intel Celeron M processor running at 1.0 GHz with up to 512 Kbytes of level 2 cache and a PCI-to-VMEbus interface. 512 Mbyte or 1 Gbyte ECC or Non-ECC DDR, 266/333 MHz SDRAM are available on the XVME-689-VR7. The XVME-689-VR7 has VGA Graphics out front panel or rear video support (Pixel resolution up to 1600 x 1200 at 85 Hz).
Additional options available on the XVME-689-VR7 are EIDE onboard 1.8-inch hard drive, CompactFlash carrier, two Serial ATA150 (SATA150) external devices and a floppy disk interface. SCSI can be added with the use of a SCSI PMC board. This XVME-689-VR7 processor module allows users to take advantage of the low-power, multiprocessing capability of the VMEbus while using standard off-the-shelf PC software, operating systems and VMEbus I/O modules.
Xembedded, Ann Arbor, MI.
(734) 975-0577. [www.Xembedded.com].
Serial ATA Flash Drive Ready for Tough Environments
Serial ATA is quickly becoming the dominant storage interface technology–in both flash and rotating disks. Apacer has launched its new Serial ATA Flash Drive (SAFD) 254 for industrial and embedded applications. Apacer’s latest SAFD 254 employs its proprietary stacking technology, which supports the widest range of operating temperature by as much as 128 Gbytes compared to all other available industrial SSD solutions in today’s market. With the highly reliable NAND SLC memory, the SAFD 254 is capable of read/write speed of up to 150/130 Mbytes/s.
Apacer’s SAFD 254 uses global wear leveling technology, which manages the uneven “wear” on the sectors of a flash media memory by distributing the writes through whole sectors of the flash media to extend its life cycle. The built-in S.M.A.R.T technology (Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology) provides users with an interface that allows instant display of key information including spare blocks and erase counts, which reduces the risk of sudden disk damage and proactively notifies customers to back up system and data. Also, the built-in low-power detector initiates cached data saving before the device’s power supply is too low. Such intelligent power failure recovery function prevents the system from data damage or data error due to sudden power outage, providing superior data security.
Apacer Memory America, Milpitas, CA.
(408) 586-1291. [www.apacer.com].
VPX SBC Serves Up 1.86 GHz Core2 Duo
VPX is shaping up to be the favorite next-gen embedded computer architecture for the military. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms’s latest VPX offering is the SBC620 rugged 6U VPX single board computer. The SBC620 features an Intel 1.86 GHz Core2 Duo (Penryn) processor with 6 Mbytes of L2 cache memory and up to 4 Gbytes of DDR2 SDRAM. The SBC620 is characterized by the flexibility and performance of its I/O subsystem. The onboard Intel 5100 chipset provides four x4 PCI Express lanes to the VPX backplane, with one XMC site supported by x8 PCI Express and a second site supported by x4 PCI Express. I/O flexibility is further enhanced by the provision of six USB 2.0 ports, two Gbit Ethernet ports, two SATA (3 Gbit/s) ports and two RS-232/422 ports.
The SBC620 also features an XGI Volari Z11 graphics processor, enabling the SBC620 to support dual VGA or VGA/DVI output. Available in five ruggedization levels from convection-cooled for development to conduction-cooled extended temperature operation for deployment, and providing optimum performance per watt, the SBC620 can be optionally configured with covers to allow for 2-level maintenance in line with the VITA-48 (REDI) standard.
GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, Charlottesville, VA.
(800) 368-2738. [www.gefanucembedded.com].
1U Rackmount Networking Platform Features 8 x GbE
The 1U rackmount form factor is finding a significant niche in military applications. Feeding that need, a 1U rackmount networking and network security platform is based on the Intel EP80579 integrated processor, a system-on-a-chip (SoC) that integrates CPU, North Bridge, South Bridge and optional Intel QuickAssist accelerator technology on a single chip. Compared with three-chip solutions, the EP80579 offers more performance per watt and application-specific performance in less space than traditional designs. The platform offers a choice of processor performance of either 600 MHz or 1.2 GHz, a high-bandwidth DDRII DIMM slot with memory up to 2 Gbytes, and a full set of VPN functions such as encryption, hashing and public/private key generation. Storage features include one 3.5” SATA HDD and CompactFlash.
The platform offers five GbE Copper and a maximum of eight GbE Ethernet ports via PCI-E by 1 or by 4 that are accessible on the front panel. To prevent network problems when the platform shuts down, PL-8000 supports one segment of LAN bypass function through WDT and GPIO pin definitions. Pricing for the unit with onboard processor begins at $435 in OEM quantities.
WIN Enterprises, North Andover, MA. (978) 688-2000. [www.win-ent.com].
PMC Card Offers Time-Triggered Networking
TTP is a communication protocol for design of fault-tolerant distributed hard real-time systems with clean definition of key system interfaces. TTTech has developed a PMC Card with TTP communication controller and a PowerPC host processor. TTPPMC Card enables time-triggered and deterministic networking for complex distributed systems. It has been designed for the use of all kinds of standard modules with PMC interface. System configuration with TTP-based PMC cards allows customers to benefit from faster time-to-market and reduced lifecycle costs.
Distributed embedded computing with TTPPMC Card enables development of distributed applications independent of the underlying communication architecture, physical layer, topology or embedded host hardware. TTPPMC Card makes application design as easy as possible. It contains an Austriamicrosystems AS8202NF communication controller and a standard Freescale MPC5567 host processor on board. A TTP network facilitates the development of reusable platforms and supports full separation of application design from system interfacing details.
TTTech North America, Tucson, AZ.
(619) 994-8626. [www.tttech.com].
Extended Temperature Module Sports Atom Z5xx Series
Intel’s Atom provides the best of two worlds: PC compatibility and low-power operation. Using the new industrial temperature versions of the ultra-low-power Intel Atom processor Z5xx series and the System Controller Hub US15WPT, a new COM Express module is geared around low power consumption and the industrial temperature range. All components used for the high-density design conga-CAx from Congatec are specified for an ambient temperature range of -40° to +85°C. Typical power requirements for this module are less than 5W. When combined with ACPI 3.0 battery management, ultra-mobile industrial applications are now possible.
The conga-CAx is available in two different CPU variants. One version is powered by the Intel Atom processor Z510PT with 1.1 GHz and 400 MHz front side and memory bus. The other version features the1.33 GHz Intel Atom processor Z520PT. Both variants are equipped with 512k L2 cache and can access up to 1 Gbyte of rugged onboard soldered DDR2 RAM. The conga-CAx also offers a rich connectivity feature-set. This includes up to 2 PCI Express x1 lanes, PCI Bus, EIDE interface, Gbit Ethernet, High Definition Audio and 8 USB ports. The onboard IDE flash drive provides up to 2 Gbytes of mass storage and is also specified for the full industrial temperature range.
Congatec, Cardiff-by-the-Sea, CA. (760) 635-2600. [www.congatec.us].
Trio of Controller Boards Rides StackableUSB
With ISA-based all but fading from view, system designers are hungry for a straightforward bus interconnect for small systems. StackableUSB feeds that need offering PC/104-like stackability linked via USB. Micro/sys continues to expand its selection of StackableUSB line with the release of three general-purpose industrial Client microcontroller boards: the USB1132, USB1124 and USB1108. The first in this family is the USB1132, a PIC32 Industrial Client card powered by the Microchip PIC32. The USB1132 has 1.56 DMIPS/MHz performance at 80 MHz, 512 Kbytes flash and 32 Kbytes SRAM memory. Features include 16 channel, 10-bit, 500 ksps ADC, RS-232, eight programmable LEDs, digital I/O, and much more (SPI, I2C, timers). The USB1124, meanwhile, is the more energy-economical PIC24 Industrial Client microcontroller powered by the Microchip PIC24, which typically requires only 40 mA power.
Rounding out the new selection is the Micro/sys USB1108 powered by an 8-bit, pipelined, 8051 general-purpose microcontroller (the Silicon Labs C8051F340). The USB1108 has 48 MIPS performance at 48 MHz, 64 Kbyte flash, 2 Kbyte EEPROM and 4352 bytes RAM. The USB1108 gives OEMs access to basic microcontroller features such as a 10-bit differential ADC, digital I/O, timers, PWMs, SPI, I2C and RS-232. The basic USB1132 starts at $165 in single quantity, the USB1124 at $145, and USB1108 at $125.
Micro/sys, Montrose, CA. (818) 244-4600. [www.embeddedsys.com].
USB Module Aids Connectivity for RS-232-Based Apps
Even as military systems embrace even more sophisticated processing elements, there’s still a vast array of mundane serial interfaces that need to be linked to. USB is a good solution for bridging that gap. A USB to single-channel RS-232 level serial UART from Future Technology Devices incorporates FTDI’s FT232RQ IC, which handles all the USB signaling and USB to UART protocols. The modules provide a fast, simple way to connect devices with an RS-232 level serial UART interface (9 way standard D-type connector) to USB (type B socket). Supporting communications with any RS-232 device, the module’s RS-232 port provides full hardware handshaking capability and a data rate of up to 1 Mbit/s. It also has three LEDs that indicate power and give a visual indication of traffic through the module. The FT232RQ is an industry standard USB to asynchronous serial interface IC.
Device drivers for all current Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and Linux operating systems are available for free. The USB-COM232-PLUS1 module has a wide range of operating temperature from -40° to + 85°C making it suitable for applications in harsh environments.
Future Technology Devices International, Glasgow, Scotland.
+44 (0) 141 429 2777. [www.ftdichip.com].
1.6 GHz Atom N270 Processor Powers VME SBC
With a power consumption of under 20W, a new ultra-low-power VME single board computer is based on the Intel Atom processor. The VP A45/01x from Concurrent Technologies uses the 1.6 GHz Intel Atom processor N270 and the Intel 945GSE Express chipset both from the Intel embedded roadmap, ensuring long-term availability. With 2 Gbyte DDR2-533 SDRAM, this ultra-low-power board also supports a variety of peripheral I/O ports, flash drive, CompactFlash site and PMC/XMC modules.
Commercial and extended temperature versions are now available, and ruggedized, conduction-cooled or air-cooled (to VITA 47) versions will be available shortly. With a wide range of flexible I/O, the VP A45/01x supports a PMC/XMC site with front I/O and P2 rear I/O (VITA35 P4V2-64ac) plus a second 33 MHz PMC site with front I/O and rear I/O via the optional P0. A range of onboard I/O is available to the user: two Ethernet interfaces, a USB 2.0 port and an RS-232 interface via the front panel, whilst the rear panel I/O includes digital 3D graphics (2048 x 1536), keyboard, mouse, four GPIO signals, two USB 2.0 ports, an RS--232/RS422/RS-485 port and two SATA150 interfaces. The optional P0 also supports two Gigabit Ethernet interfaces.
Concurrent Technologies, Woburn, MA.
(781) 933-5900. [www.gocct.com].
Real-Time Messaging Middleware Meets Secure Linux
The Linux operating system has a firm foothold in the military market. Software developers like the fact that they can start developing with Linux without the overhead of a commercial OS to consider. Real-Time Innovations (RTI) has announced that RTI Data Distribution Service, its real-time messaging middleware, has been integrated with Security-Enhanced Linux (SELinux). This combination provides real-time and high-performance distributed applications with the ability to securely distribute data by combining RTI’s high-performance network communications with the extremely flexible Mandatory Access Control (MAC) facilities of SELinux.
RTI Data Distribution Service allows distributed applications to securely exchange messages and data by authenticating peers and encrypting information that is sent over the network. The MAC capabilities of SELinux add several additional levels of protection against misconfiguration, software errors and application vulnerabilities: System-wide security policies control which applications are allowed to communicate with each other. Even applications with the appropriate credentials and keys can communicate only if explicitly provisioned to do so. Files containing keys, configuration information and logs are protected from unauthorized access. RTI Data Distribution Service and a reference SELinux security policy are available today from RTI.
Real-Time Innovations, Sunnyvale, CA.
(408) 990-7400. [www.rti.com].
CANopen Stack Supports SocketCAN Drivers for Linux
The popular CANopenRT protocol software from IXXAT now supports the most recent implementation of the SocketCAN drivers for Linux using the Sysfs virtual file system. SocketCAN is a set of open source drivers and a network stack that extends the Berkeley sockets API in Linux by introducing a new protocol family: PF_CAN. Main components of SocketCAN are the network device drivers for different CAN controllers and the implementation of the CAN protocol family. The SocketCAN framework has become part of a vanilla kernel starting with 2.6.25.
IXXAT’s CANopenRT software has supported multiple user application threads interacting with one CANopen core stack module since its initial release. The abstraction of the CAN controller as a Socket interface now offers the possibility to run other CAN-based protocols, such as SAE J1939, on the same CAN interface in parallel to CANopen also on Linux platforms, similar to the versatility that is already available on Microsoft Windows systems with CANopenRT for the IXXAT VCI V3 driver. CANopenRT has been tested with SocketCAN drivers for NXP SJA1000 and Freescale MSCAN for Linux distributions based on the kernel version 2.6.
IXXAT, Bedford, NH. (603) 471-0800. [www.ixxat.com].