The number of embedded computing architectures, including VPX, seems to grow daily. Interoperability, economies-of-scale and multiple sources are benefits customer demand in any solution.
VPX – and by extension OpenVPX – continues to grow in popularity. These VITA-defined architectures combine the latest connector and electro-mechanical technology with the most popular high-speed protocols on the market.
VPX/OpenVPX are point-to-point architectures supporting start, dual-star, mesh, hybrid and ring topologies. They are fabric agnostic enabling protocols like PCIe Gen 3, 40GBase-KR Ethernet, Infiniband, SRIO and SERDES.
Other technologies featured within VPX/OpenVPX include support for legacy 3U and 6U formats. PMC and XMC mezzanine solutions continue to be popular. Hybrid backplanes have been developed to support VME64, VXS and VPX solutions.
Standardized, long-life platforms like VPX/OpenVPX find a home across legacy and newly emerging applications. For example, radar, advanced sensing, electronic warfare (EW), software defined radio (SDN) and surveillance are adopting VPX solutions.
Abaco Systems VP430 Direct RF Processing System
New advances in component design and integration directly affect the evolution of VPX systems. Xilinx’s new Zynq UltraScale+ RFSoC technology integrates ADCs, DACs, codecs, multi-core processing and the programmable logic of an FPGA.
The complete RF signal chain of the Zynq RFSoC is driving development within the embedded computing community. Huntsville-based Abaco Systems recently announced the availability of the VP430 Direct RF Processing System.
The VP430 is a 3U VPX COTS solution that features Zynq RFSoCs. It is also one of densest analog FPGA DSP boards available. It offers ith eight ADC and DAC synchronized channels. The VP430 can also synchronize multiple boards for even larger system applications.
Samtec FireFly™ Optical Engines
Abaco’s VP430 includes optional optical engine connectivity. Abaco chose Samtec FireFly™ Optical Engines to connect the RFSoC transceivers to connect to a VITA 66.4 optical backplane connector with fiber optic connectivity.
The Samtec FireFly™ Micro Flyover System™ is the first interconnect system that gives a designer the flexibility of using micro footprint high-performance optical and low-cost copper interconnects interchangeably with the same connector system.
FireFly™ optical cable systems provide the flexibility to achieve higher data rates to 28 Gbps and/or greater distances by flying data over lossy PCB, simplifying board design and enhancing performance.