The Ever-Shrinking World of Small-Form-Factor Embedded Computing

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Published in Military & Aerospace Electronics
Written by Jamie Whitney

Open-systems standards like C4ISR/EW Modular Open Suite of Standards (CMOSS), Sensor Open Systems Architecture (SOSA), and Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE) are helping drive the development of small-form-factor (SFF) embedded military and aerospace hardware.

Open systems standards help to ensure components share a common platform and can interchange information across military branches.

Experts at Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions of Ashburn, Va., say the SOSA committee aims to define the entire connector interface for 3U and 6U VPX.

SOSA started a small form factor sub-committee a little over a year ago or so, and they were originally considering VITA 74 as the base standard from which they were going to work,” says Ivan Straznicky, chief technology officer for advanced packaging at Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions.

“Recently, though, they’ve also opened it up to ‘Short VPX,’ which has been kicked off within the VITA Standards Organization (VSO), and Curtiss-Wright is participating in and monitoring that effort. Short VPX is basically, exactly as the name implies - a shorter version of 3U VPX: 100 millimeters deep instead of 160 millimeters.

“But the card edge is the same as 3U VPX, which is great, since it can leverage all of the work that’s been done for 3U VPX, in terms of pin-outs, voltages, and thermal management,” Straznicky says. “All of the standardization work that’s been done on 3U VPX ports offer to the Short VPX form factor.”

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