Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division recently announced the general availability of its 3U OpenVPX™ VPX3-1220 single board computer (SBC) and the award winning XMC-121 XMC processor mezzanine card, both of which make optimal use of Intel’s latest 7th-Gen Intel Xeon processor ‘former codename Kaby Lake’.

These rugged commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) processor modules feature Intel’s latest low-power E3-1505L v6 Xeon processor to provide more quad-core x86 performance than previous processor generations operating at higher power levels. The VPX3-1220 and XMC-121, which are qualified for full production, have been provided to leading customers for early development since April 2017.

Designed for use in size, weight, power and cost (SWaP-C) constrained aerospace and defence systems, these fully rugged, open architecture processor modules are ideal for use in general purpose mission computing applications that require the highest possible processing performance while consuming low power. The VPX3-1220 and XMC-121 speed and simplify the integration of Intel Xeon processing into demanding aerospace and defence deployed applications, such as mission computing, image and display processing, virtualization and small multi-SBC ISR systems.

Award Winning XMC Design

On 26 October 2017, Mentor, a Siemens Business, recognised the design of the XMC-121 with First Place in the category of Military & Aerospace design excellence at its 27th Annual PCB Technology Leadership Awards ceremony. The award recognised Curtiss-Wright’s design team for its contributions towards advancing Intel-based Single Board CPU Mezzanine designs success in integrating an unprecedented level of functionality into an extremely compact PWB space, without compromising the highest levels of quality and reliability.

“We are pleased to announce that we are now delivering both of our new ‘Kaby Lake’ based rugged COTS processor boards to system designers seeking Intel’s latest processing architectures for aerospace and defense applications,” said Lynn Bamford, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Defense Solutions division.

“The ideal combination of low power and high performance provided by 7th Gen Intel Xeon processor technology is ideal for 3U VPX and XMC small form factor single board computers, bringing new levels of processing to size, weight and power-constrained platforms without increasing power consumption.”

These high-performance COTS modules are supported by a wide range of popular operating environments, including many distributions of Linux and real-time operating systems (RTOS) such as Wind River® VxWorks® and VxWorks 653 and Green Hills Software Integrity-178 tuMP™.

The new XMC-121 XMC processor mezzanine module features the same Intel Xeon processor as the VPX3-1220, but delivers its high performance on an even smaller form factor. The XMC-121 enables system designers to add Intel Xeon processing to extremely space constrained systems. An ideal means of reducing system slot count, this XMC processor mezzanine can be mounted on a graphics or FPGA module, or on the power supply of Curtiss-Wright MPMC series system chassis for a truly zero-slot processing solution. The XMC-121 can also be mounted on the VPX3-1220 to double the processing density in a single slot.

Full System Solutions

The VPX3-1220 and XMC-121 are easily integrated with other members of Curtiss-Wright’s extensive 3U OpenVPX product family, including Intel, Power Architecture® and ARM-based SBCs, powerful graphics and storage modules, as well as DSP and FPGA engines to develop powerful mission computing and ISR/EW systems. They join the Xeon D-based CHAMP-XD1 3U VPX DSP processor card to provide customers with a wider choice of Xeon-based computing modules, enabling system designers to select the solution that best matches their application’s requirements without having to compromise on features and performance.

Ideal for Technology Upgrades

Designed to be pin-compatible with previous generations of Curtiss-Wright SBCs, the VPX3-1220 is also ideal for use in technology upgrade programmes. Thanks to its 7th-Gen Intel Xeon processor, the VPX3-1220 provides faster DRAM and consumes lower power than previous generations of SBCs. In addition, the board’s enhanced graphics and video features deliver up to three times faster GPU performance compared to predecessors.

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