Managing the Increasing Bandwidth Requirements of Today’s Defense Applications

An extension of VME standards, VPX (VITA 46) was 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.

Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions was a leading participant in the VITA (VME International Trade Association) working group that developed the VITA 46 standard. The group aimed to develop a platform for superior performance in data-intensive applications, including those of the defense and aerospace industries.

The VPX standard retains the 6U and 3U Eurocard form factors developed for the VME standard. In addition, it supports existing PCI Mezzanine Card (PMC) and XMC mezzanines. To ensure backward compatibility with legacy hardware, the specification includes provisions for 6U hybrid backplanes to accommodate VME64, VXS and VPX boards.

VPX answers the Department of Defense’s call for modular serial switched fabrics. It supports an array of fabrics, delivering speeds up to 10.3 Gbit/s. These switched fabrics include PCI Express, Serial RapidIO and 10 Gigabit Ethernet.

Because it is compatible with VME, VPX 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.

Another advantage of VPX is its greatly increased total I/O capacity. VPX offers 160 high-speed differential pairs, each of which is nominally rated for a maximum of 10.3 Gbaud performance. Because of the high-speed signals, board and system designers must consider signal integrity analysis throughout the process of developing VPX products.

Complementary mechanical standards have been developed to further extend the advantages of VPX for rugged integrated systems. For instance, the VPX-REDI standard establishes alternate mechanical formats that provide enhanced capabilities beyond those of traditional IEEE 1101.1 and 1101.2 formats. The REDI standard improves thermal management to dissipate heat from embedded systems including conduction cooling, air cooling, air-flow through cooling, and liquid flow-through cooling.

VPX Processor Cards Data and signal processing continues requiring increased performance with lower power and high performance I/O. Curtiss-Wright addresses these demands through full line of VPX processor cards. MORE> 3U MPMC Mission Computers 3U Multi-Platform Mission Computers are fully integrated computing subsystems with a wide range of I/O ready for deployment in SWaP constrained applications. MORE> VPX Data Recorder Cards Signal processing applications frequently require VPX recording, playback and/or analysis of data in real-time. MORE> VPX Switches & Routers Curtiss-Wright OpenVPX and VPX switches and routers enable the vision of networked military and aerospace systems by providing systems integrators with a fast and powerful way to interconnect chassis, cards, and CPU's through switched Gigabit and 10 Gigabit Ethernet as well as sRIO & InfiniBand links. MORE> VPX Graphics Cards Curtiss-Wright's family of VPX graphics controllers are specifically designed for providing man-machine interfaces where graphics and sensor imagery must be combined. MORE> 6U MPMC Mission Computers 6U Multi-Platform Mission Computer (MPMC) product family consists of fully integrated computing subsystems ready for deployment in high-performance applications. MORE> VPX Carrier Cards Curtiss-Wright provides carrier cards for using XMC and PMC modules in VPX systems. MORE> Program Specific Systems Curtiss-Wright has the system integration expertise to create specific system solutions, with tailored, optimized functionality for a specific platform or program. MORE>

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