Next-Gen Processors and Virtualization Cut SWaP Tradeoffs

October 07, 2021

Next-Gen Processors and Virtualization Cut SWaP Tradeoffs

Article by Brandon Lewis on

The Columbia Vertol 234 heavy-lift helicopter is used in emergency response and aerial firefighting operations around the world. The aircraft can carry up to 51,000 pounds of water or other flame retardants to wildfires up to 850 nautical miles away.

Despite its vast capacity, in the design of aircraft like the Vertol 234, every ounce matters. With each onboard system and component, aerospace engineers trade range, payload size, or both, which can be the difference in traveling hundreds of miles to make an additional pass at a fire line.

Computational resources come at the ultimate premium in any aircraft. Size, weight, and power—known as SWaP—often dictate which electronic systems are included, and which ones are left behind.

“You might have a communication system,” says Aaron Frank, Senior Product Manager at Curtiss-Wright, a leading supplier of airborne electronics.

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Intel Processing Solutions

As an Intel Technology Partner, Curtiss-Wright works closely with Intel to select only specific Intel processors supported within Intel’s embedded technology group. These processors enjoy long-life availability and meet the high-reliability requirements that Curtiss-Wright products demand for the long-term success of your programs.

VPX6-1961 6U VPX Intel Xeon W-11000E Processor Card

The VPX6-1961 processor card is powered by a high-performance Intel Xeon W-11000E Series processor with double the number of cores compared to previous quad-core generations. Qualified to operate at extreme temperatures and under demanding shock and vibration conditions, the VPX6-1961 pairs the processor with a highly rugged board design that enables reliable performance in the most demanding conditions.