Avionics Demo of 3U VPX Graphics Processor and XMC SBC

Video: Avionics Demo of 3U VPX Graphics Processor and XMC SBC

This video highlights Curtiss-Wright's VPX3-716 3U VPX Graphics Processor in an avionics application running a real-time operating system, OpenGL drivers, and DO-178C safety certification package. The VPX3-716 includes AMD's E8860 GPU processor. This card offers methods to fully utilize the features of AMD's GPU within a rugged system. Due to the reduced general-purpose processing needs of this demonstration, we include an XMC Processor card for size, weight, and power minimalization.

Video Transcript

My name is Gregory Sikkens. I am a Product Marketing Manager with Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions. My product responsibilities include the rugged graphics card you see here as well as DO-254 and DO-178 safety certification products. This avionics demonstration here fits in with the graphics as well as certification very nicely.  

We enjoyed working with AMD very much on the technology collaboration using the E8860 GPU and putting it into an embedded rugged environment where it works in a -40 to +85 degree Celsius card edge with no cooling fans, fully conduction-cooled. That involved working directly with AMD’s engineers to come up with a solution to enable that for our customers. 

We found AMD very easy to work with. We have been working with them since early 2000, going back to the M9 GPU which has been a very successful product for us and is still shipping today. We are seeing tremendous interest in the E8860 processor. What is really great about AMD processors is that GPUs are supported by real-time operating systems by companies like CoreAVI. This is what our market is looking for.

What’s really exciting about this product is that we are the first to market with an OpenVPX 3U module using this E8860 product. It’s actually different than what is normally done which is graphics mezzanine on a single board computer base/host card. We have inverted that so the GPU is on the base card and the SBC is plugged onto the mezzanine site. That allows full operation of the GPU at full clock rate and being able to conduct the heat away properly. This puts your graphics performance where you don’t need as much processor performance to run the driver because all of the work is done in the GPU. So, putting all of that together is still a one-slot solution with an emphasis on graphics.