Wednesday 31 March 2010

Latest processors now on VME boards

Concurrent Technologies has released the VP 717/08x family of 6U VME boards featuring the Intel® Core™ i7 processor family. Depending on the application requirements a choice of processors are supported: the 2.53GHz Intel® Core™ i7-610E, 2.0GHz Intel® Core™ i7-620LE and the 1.06GHz Intel® Core™ i7-620UE. Based on 32nm process technology and the new Intel® integrated memory/graphics controller architecture, these processors are from the Intel® embedded roadmap which offers at least seven year availability. With up to 8 Gbytes of DDR3-1066 ECC SDRAM and dual PMC/XMC sites the boards also include extensive I/O functionality and can support VITA 31.1. The VP 717/08x family offers front and rear I/O interfaces that are pin-compatible with the popular VP 417/03x family providing a continuing upgrade path. Commercial and extended temperature versions are also available, and a compatible range of ruggedized, conduction-cooled or air-cooled versions will be available shortly. The boards are particularly suitable for CPU intensive processing applications within the defence, homeland security, industrial control, and transportation market sectors.

The VP 717/08x family is based on the combination of the Intel® Core i7 processor and an Intel® Platform Controller Hub (PCH), the Mobile Intel® QM57 Express chipset. This combination benefits from the integration of the graphics controller and the memory controller into the processor, resulting in reduced memory latency and improved performance-per-watt. The Intel Core i7 processors feature Intel® Direct Media Interface Technology and Intel® Flexible Display Interfaces to the PCH to provide simultaneous high-speed non-graphic traffic and video/graphic traffic. The processors also feature Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology to allow multiple simultaneous execution threads in each core, and Intel® Turbo Boost Technology which elevates performance for specific workloads by increasing processor core frequency on one core when the second core and/or graphics engine utilization level is low. The CPU and graphics engines have separate Turbo modes, and by using simple BIOS setup options, the user can disable either or both of the turbo modes, or pre-set a bias towards one or the other feature.

VITA 31.1 Gigabit Ethernet on a VME64x backplane enables a tried and tested method of implementing a LAN-based multiprocessor architecture by leveraging readily available Ethernet hardware, TCP/IP software, clustering and other network management tools. Using standard networking techniques offers an efficient method of remote booting boards within the chassis, and simplified intercommunication between boards. It can be used as a method of offloading tasks from the standard VME backplane, thereby improving overall application efficiency. VITA 31.1 is suitable for applications such as data acquisition, radar data processing or those requiring data synchronization across multiple system boards.

Supporting two 100MHz PCI-X PMC or two XMC x8 PCI Express® sites, with expansion for two more PMC sites via an optional expansion carrier the VP 717/08x maintains compatibility with the VP 417/03x and offers an array of rear I/O functions –
2048 x 1536 analog graphics, keyboard, mouse, 2x RS232/422/485, 2x Gigabit Ethernet, 2x USB 2.0, EIDE and SATA interfaces. The front panel supports dual PMC/XMC, 2048 x 1536 analog graphics, keyboard and mouse interfaces, including an additional USB 2.0 interface and an additional RS232 interface. To cater for embedded applications, there is 64Mbytes of Application Flash memory. For application and data storage there are EIDE and SATA300 rear I/O interfaces, an onboard site for a CompactFlash™ module and an onboard option for a SATA300 2.5-inch disk drive. As well as the industry standard PC interfaces, other features available include a watchdog timer, long duration timer, and LAN boot firmware.

For ease of integration the VP 717/08x supports many of today’s leading operating systems, including Linux®, Windows® Server 2008, Windows® Server 2003, Windows® XP Embedded, Windows® XP, Solaris™, LynxOS®, VxWorks® and QNX®.

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