CompactPCI and CompactPCI Express Conduction Cooled Solutions

CompactPCI and CompactPCI express Conduction Cooled Solutions

PCI Embedded Computer Systems has developed several new conduction cooled products. These include CompactPCI and CompactPCI express controllers, a conduction cooled chassis and CompactPCI - PMC Carriers.

CompactPCI (ETX) - CompactPCI Express (XTX) Modular Single Board Computers
ETX-XTX CompactPCI ® and CompactPCI ® express carrier boards combined with a large selection of available ETX and XTX CPU modules and PCI Systems unique conduction cooling design provide a new era of availability for conduction cooled SBCs. An important factor for system integration is the thermal design. The PCI conduction cooling option is a thermal coupling interface that makes fanless and rugged solutions possible. USB, Keyboard, Mouse, Ethernet and VGA connectors are on the 2 slot wide Front Panel. The parallel port, serial port, and LVDS connectors are accessible directly behind the front panel. A battery is included to support Real Time Clock Operations. The carrier boards complies with the PICMG 2.0 R 2.1 (CompactPCI) and PICMG EXP.0 R 1.0 (CompactPCIexpress) specifications.

The thermal aluminium block that hugs the surface structure of the CPU board is a negative 3D image of the CPU board. The gaps are filled with heat conductive material. Therefore the whole board has a nearly equal temperature gradient. This is very important for MTBF considerations because the even temperature causes less stress to the solder joints.

Also a low delta T is the result of this conduction cooled design. Therefore the CPU die temperature can be held to within 15 deg. C higher than the aluminium block when properly mounted to a cold plate, allowing CPU operation up to 85 deg. C.

PCI uses double layer wedge lock connections, therefore doubling the heat transfer area to the cold plate. The heat from the cold plate can be distributed to a chassis wall or through cooling fins to the surrounding air (for example forced air inside ARINC600 enclosures).

A rear I/O option card provides access to the IDE port for remote mounting of a hard disk, Keyboard, Mouse, second serial port, a second Ethernet port, and GPIO.

The PCI_XTX modules feature Intel® Pentium M processors and the NEW Intel CORE TWO processors. These processors, in conjunction with some of the fast XTX I/O extensions including PCI Express, will lead to new levels of system performance.

As the NEW Intel CORE TWO processors arrive, embedded systems benefit by much lower power dissipation because the much higher processor performance very often uses less power dissipation because the processor throttles down the speed by himself.

3U CompactPCI Rugged 6 Slot Chassis

This 3U CompactPCI ® Conduction Cooled Chassis comes complete with a 5 slot backplane and a 200 Watt single slot Modular PS with 28V DC or AC input. The 5 slot backplane will accommodate the Modular PS, a CPU card, and 4 add-on cards. Optional rack mount tabs with handles or custom mounting tabs may also be added. CompactPCI ® and CompactPCI ® express backplanes are available. Both have Rear I/O connections.

3U and 6U CompactPCI ® and CompactPCI ® express Conduction Cooled PMC Carriers

This conduction cooled CompactPCI PMC carrier provides an active interface between the CompactPCI bus (backplane) and a PCI Mezzanine Card (PMC). This product addresses the needs of aerospace, military, and rugged industrial applications. It contains a thermal heat frame made of aluminium that fits together with conduction cooled PMC modules. Conduction cooling conducts heat away from the hot spots of the board and transfers the heat to the card edges and to the system chassis. No active ventilation is necessary inside of the system, which means the boards are sealed from the environmental influences found outside of the chassis. The heat frame and integrated wedge locks for the conduction cooling stiffens carrier and PMC module enabling the board to resist high shock and vibration.

XMC modules

Since the high performance embedded computing market is moving toward switched fabric-enabled architectures, CompactPCI ® express is the next logical step and ruggedized, conduction cooled systems are finding their way into demanding industrial applications.
As single board computers and higher performance AMD/Intel and PowerPC based processing blades move from buses to switched fabrics, systems integrators will have an increasing need for mezzanine I/O and processing options. Today's processor cards use the PCI Mezzanine Card (PMC) standard to support modular I/O. The VITA 42 (XMC) standard extends the PMC standard for mezzanine-to-carrier interfaces.

XMC modules are 149mm x 74 mm, allowing wide flexibility in OEM baseboard form-factors.
The standard implements a layered architecture, using a base standard to define mechanicals, connectors and signal paths along with separate protocol standards to map the base standard into specific switched fabrics. The result is that systems integrators can use XMC technology today-with a mix of old and new products-and incrementally migrate toward all-XMC solutions as their application performance requirements go up in the future.

There are a range of interfaces and applications that will benefit from the scalability and throughput provided by the XMC standard. High-performance embedded systems often require tremendous amounts of sensor data, and XMC modules can support multiple channels of Serial, Fibre Channel, Gigabit and 10G Ethernet, and other streaming interfaces.

A/D and D/A channel interfaces are also well-suited for XMC-based applications provided that the desired signal integrity can be maintained. As the XMC market matures, particularly in the PCI Express arena, a wide range of standard interfaces such as networking, storage and video will become available.

XMC Modules

The AMD Geode LX 800 processor family offers new levels of performance and power versatility in an x86-based embedded Processor and operates at a maximum power of 3.9W and 1.8W typical at 500MHz.

Designers can now focus on developing end products that efficiently meet consumer needs with far fewer limits imposed by software porting or compatibility.
The AMD Geode LX processors deliver the low-power x86 performance to design innovative and creative new products without compromise.
Coupled with the AMD Geode(TM) CS5536 companion device, the combined chipset, which operates at 1.9W typical at 433MHz and at 2.4W typical at 500MHz, offers designers a complete set of features that can deliver full desktop functionality to embedded and portable devices.

PCI bus, PCIexpress bus and I/O signals like 2 serial ports, a parallel port, several USB ports, video and LCD signals, Ethernet, keyboard and mouse and an audio interface are brought to the baseboard through these connectors.

XMC cards are intended to be used where slim parallel card mounting is required such as in embedded single board computers, desktop computers, portable computers and servers.

The XMCGeode800 has a PCI to PCIexpress bridge implemented and can be used as PMC or XMC module taking advantage of the Geode 66MHz PCI bus.

These XMC modules are exceptional for such applications as remote data acquisition, airborne data loggers, very small battery operated expandable test systems and applications in ruggedized environments. Low cost but extended temperature range from -40 deg. C up to 85 deg. C opens up a wide field for COTS applications.

Many semiconductor device vendors are creating PCI Express solutions for a wide range of standard interfaces, including Fibre Channel, Serial ATA, Gigabit and 10G Ethernet, and InfiniBand. As the PC ecosystem migrates from PCI to PCI Express, the embedded market will experience a migration from PMC-based PCI solutions to XMC-based PCI Express solutions.

XMC-enabled carrier cards and modules are becoming available from multiple vendors, adding open standard switched fabrics to the set of building blocks available to the systems integrator. Shown in Picture 2 is a 6U XMC/PMC conduction cooled carrier board.

As with PMC, the open XMC standard will result in increased choices for integrators and allow selection of the right module for the job with a high degree of interoperability and low integration risk.

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