Mezzanine Card provides intelligent Profibus connectivity.

Press Release Summary:

With 16-bit processing unit, M79 M-Module can be used as flexible solution for intelligent remote I/O in automation and instrumentation applications. Product features intelligent Profibus DP Slave Interface that conforms to Profibus DIN19245 standard. Offered with short-circuit protection on output, with optically isolated RS485 interface, unit supports transmission rates from 9.6 kbps to 12 Mbps. Processing unit has 512 KB of flash memory and 1 MB SRAM.

Original Press Release:

M-Module Provides Intelligent Profibus Connectivity in Automation and Instrumentation Applications

Dallas, June 16, 2003 -- A new M-Module mezzanine card from MEN Micro, Inc., can be used as a flexible solution for intelligent remote input/output (I/O) in automation and instrumentation applications. With its 16-bit processing unit, the M-Module is an intelligent interface for CompactPCI, PXI or VMEbus systems, or embedded single board computers (SBCs) to the Profibus fieldbus.

The new M79 M-Module features an intelligent Profibus DP Slave Interface that conforms to the Profibus DIN19245 standard. The mezzanine card has short circuit protection on the output with an optically isolated RS485 interface as required by the standard. A range of transmission rates from 9.6 kilobits per second (kbps) to 12 megabits per second (Mbps) is supported by the M79. The M-Module's processing unit has 512 KB of flash memory and one MB of static random access memory (SRAM). An additional 16 KB of shared random access memory is provided for communications with a host processor.

"Designers of automation or instrumentation applications often want to offload I/O processing tasks from the system's main processor to an I/O handler," said Ernest Godsey, president of MEN Micro, Inc. "They don't want the system's main processor to get bogged down with protocol stacks when it should be doing other tasks that are mission critical to the application. With its 16-bit processor, the M79 can handle the Profibus interface, making a wide range of I/O devices, instruments, sensors and peripherals available to the system designer."

By running locally a complete Profibus protocol stack from Softing, the M79 is able to operate with only minimum interaction with the host processor to. Windows, VxWorks, OS-9, RTX and Linux. drivers for the M79 can be downloaded from the MEN website for free. All drivers are compatible with the Softing Profibus tools and are based on the MEN Driver Interface System (MDIS), a logical abstraction layer between the operating system and the hardware that simplifies the integration of I/O interfaces regardless of the operating system.

Pricing and Availability

The M79 is available now from MEN Micro, Inc. Pricing starts at $583 for single units. In the United States, MEN Micro products are sold through a national network of technical manufacturer's representatives. For sales information, call 972 939-2675, send faxes to 972 939-0055 or email For more information on the M79, this press release, a product photo and collateral materials are available at

About M-Modules

The M-Module specification was developed by MEN Mikro in Germany and has been widely accepted in the electronics industry. It is an ANSI (American National Standards Institute) standard. M-Modules are plug-in mezzanine cards approximately 50 by 150 mm in size. They can be inserted onto carrier cards to function in PCI, CompactPCI, PXI, VMEbus or other bus-based systems, or they can be mounted directly onto a single board computer in bus-less applications. MEN Micro offers a selection of more than 100 different M-Modules with a variety of configurations and capabilities. Other manufacturers also offer M-Modules and more than 200 cards with different capabilities are currently on the market.

About MEN Micro

MEN designs, manufactures and sells board-level industrial real-time and embedded computer products. The flexibility inherent in MEN's standard products allows system platforms to be custom configured for a wide range of applications. In addition, the company develops custom boards and systems for OEMs, end users and system integrators. MEN's products include VMEbus and CompactPCI compute platforms with Intel Pentium, Motorola 68000 or PowerPC processors, and a wide selection of M-Module or PC· MIP mezzanine I/O modules. The MEN product lines support the most widely used operating systems, including Windows NT, VxWorks, OS-9, QNX and Linux.

MEN was founded in 1982 in Nürnberg, Germany, as MEN Mikro Elektronik GmbH. The company has subsidiaries in France, MEN Mikro Elektronik SA; the United Kingdom, MEN Micro, Ltd., and the United States, MEN Micro, Inc. A network of technical distributors services and supports the rest of the world.


Windows and Windows NT are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. OS-9 is a trademark of Microware Corporation. VxWorks is a trademark of WindRiver Corporation. All other trademarks are the properties of their respective owners.

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