27 May 2011

3U OpenVPX PCI Express and Ethernet hybrid switch

A new 3U OpenVPX PCI Express and Ethernet hybrid switch has been designed to provide 10 times the I/O bandwidth of current systems, paving the way for a new generation of high performance embedded computing applications.

Kontron describes the VX3905 as the 'next generation in OpenVPX switches' for high performance embedded computer applications. Delivering high transfer rates in centralised VPX and OpenVPX platforms, the device has up to 4 x 6 Gen1/Gen2 PCIe backplane ports for the data plane. The OpenVPX system designs enable application specific configurations through centralised COTS backplanes.

The Kontron 3U OpenVPX PCI Express and Ethernet hybrid switch VX3905 is compliant with the OpenVPX VITA65 switch slot profile SLT3-SWH-6F6U-14.4. It provides up to 24 PCI Express Gen 1/Gen 2 ports for up to 32 lanes which can be configured (x8, x4, x2 and x1) depending on the required bandwidth. Kontron says this offers a maximum data transfer rate of up to four gigabyte/s per port for serial interboard communication, an extended lifecycle of OpenVPX applications as well as enough headroom for future high bandwidth designs.

The switch can also be partitioned into multiple PCIe subsystem in order for the centralised backplane to host multiple root complexes each being able to control their own peripherals. This enables densely packed system designs in a single housing to reduce space, weight and TCO. Up to nine Gigabit Ethernet ports are available on the Kontron VX3905 for the control plane, enabling dedicated system management for high availability. An optional SATA disk carrier in accordance with the OpenVPX VITA65 SLT3-STO-2U-14.5.1 profile facilitates central data storage for OpenVPX systems without valuable payload slots having to be used. In addition, the Kontron VX3905 can also be deployed in 6U systems as stipulated in the mechanical OpenVPX specifications. In combination with the Kontron 6U VPX dual processor board VX6060, OEMs can develop new computing platforms for data intensive applications like radar, sonar and imaging with a SWaP (Size Weight and Power) optimised design based on standard COTS components.

Kontron offers VXFabric, a software solution for interboard communication for 3U and 6U VPX processor boards. Common Linux and TCP or UDP sockets can be used. It decouples the application software from the low level hardware management to simplify and accelerate application development. According to Kontron it enables longer application life cycles as the software is designed to ensure migration to future standards such as 10 and 40G Ethernet on the backplane.

The VX3905 is available now in an air cooled (0 to 55°C) and conduction cooled version (-40 to 85°C).

Author
Kontron

Supporting Information

Websites
http://www.kontron.com/products/boards+and+mezzanines/3u+vpx/switch/vx3905.html

Companies
Kontron UK Ltd

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