VPX (VITA 46) specifications were created to deliver more robust, high-speed performance for data-intensive, high bandwidth applications, including intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance applications such as radar, electronic warfare and electro-optical/infrared. In addition, VPX withstands greater mechanical stress and resists corrosion, making it the ideal solution for the challenges of military and aerospace applications. VPX is an ANSI standard that facilitates efficient upgrade to switched fabric technology for the sizeable existing base of VMEbus users, bringing them up to the task of supporting multiprocessing systems that demand the fastest possible communication capabilities. VPX increases the total I/O capacity by offering 160 high-speed differential pairs of I/O.
The VPX Ecosystem
This white paper provides a concise primer on the current VPX ecosystem and how its various specifications can work together to architect a wide range of rugged high performance systems.
OpenVPX is based on VITA 46.0 and 46.1 VPX standards that allow the design and implementation of high-speed, high-power switched fabric-based systems. The specification defines backplane and board level profiles from COTS vendors to ensure interoperability of products used in developing systems and subsystems. By considering the system-level view of performance and interoperability, OpenVPX reduces the need for custom development of backplanes and chassis for every application. It also enables system integrators to focus on the demanding application needs of their program rather than dealing with product interoperability issues. OpenVPX allows system developers to reduce development time and reduce the risk associated with using VPX boards in systems.
The specification defines OpenVPX profiles for slots, backplanes and modules to assure boards can be replaced by other boards with only minimal backplane changes. It also adds air-cooled Line Replaceable Module plug-and-play interoperability through the use of Rear Transition Modules (RTMs).
The standard defines OpenVPX system topologies to promote interoperability. The OpenVPX slot types include payload, peripheral, switch and storage. In addition, the OpenVPX backplanes include star, mesh, hybrid and bridged topologies. The specification also discusses the Utility Plane, Power Distribution, System Control Signals, the Reference Clocks and the GPIO Signals. Pin Assignments are defined for J0/P0 and J1/P1.
Curtiss-Wright is a leading supplier of boards and systems designed to be compliant with OpenVPX (VITA 65). We are proud of our role as a leading participant in the open standards process that resulted in the ANSI ratification of VITA 65.
Scalable Processing Power for Modern Defense Systems
The CHAMP-XD3, is our highest-performance, security-enhanced, 3U OpenVPX digital signal processing (DSP) processing module. Based on the Intel® Xeon® D-1700 processor, the SOSA-aligned payload card represents a “quantum leap” for sensor data processing capability in size, weight, and power (SWaP) constrained applications.
What is VPX-REDI
VPX-REDI (VITA 48) was inspired by the need for higher density electronics, increased power draw that requires more effective cooling strategies, and rugged and maintainable modules. VPX-REDI defines design parameters for enhanced cooling features and maintenance strategies to effectively support the increased power draw of high-density electronic systems. It also defines standards for the mechanical interface between the chassis and plug-in modules of embedded computing systems. VPX-REDI targets the requirements of COTS platforms for defense and aerospace, defining mechanical design implementations for embedded computing modules with three primary design objectives:
- Accommodating cooling methods that include forced air, conduction, and liquid cooling.
- Adding features compatible with ESD covers required for two-level maintenance strategies.
- Facilitating module designs with components on the secondary side of the circuit board.
The VPX-REDI specifications ratified by the American National Standards Institute/VITA define mechanical specifications for:
- Plug-in units that use increased slot pitch to deliver improved durability and enhanced thermal performance
- Mechanical interchangeability of air-cooled plug-in units In both the 3U and 6U form factors and for ensuring Level 2 maintenance compatibility, which facilitates field replacement of components
- Air flow-through cooling for 6U plug-in units, employing a compact core heat exchanger in the unit’s central heat sink
Optimizing Performance in OpenVPX Architectures with Intel Xeon Processors
OpenVPX (VITA 65) has made the VPX architecture a preferred option for modules and subsystems engineered for defense industry applications. This white paper looks at how to optimize performance in OpenVPX architectures with Intel Xeon processors