Apr28

Modularity on the Battlefield Meets Performance and Cost Demands

Modularity on the Battlefield Meets Performance and Cost Demands

Being able to replace damaged modules while at sea or swap functions at the LRU level adds a whole new meaning to “SWaP-C.

When you’re tasked with maintaining technology on the battlefield or similar arduous environment, options are a good thing—usually. When your option is to pull a complete system and send it out for repair, well that’s likely not the best alternative, although that’s what regularly occurs. When your option is to swap in a new subsystem for a faulty one with a limited amount of reconfiguration, you’re likely going to take advantage of that option

Apr17

VPX Has a Heat Dissipation Problem

VPX Has a Heat Dissipation Problem

Instead of using the board edges to conduct heat, why not use the entire board?.

In a recent post, Embedded Board Standards Are No Longer “Standard” – So Why Aren’t You Looking for Better Alternatives? we talked about the problems related to VPX as a “standard.” It’s clear that it’s become more accurately an “open specification,” which means it’s lost any advantage in terms of interoperability or modularity.

Mar31

Embedded Board Standards Are No Longer “Standard” – So Why Aren’t You Looking for Better Alternatives?

Embedded Board Standards Are No Longer “Standard” – So Why Aren’t You Looking for Better Alternatives?

That “standard” you’re buying has some issues, and it carries a lot of extra baggage. For new designs, it’s time to look at more up-to-date, modular alternatives.

By most engineers’ definition of a board standard, a customer should be able to remove a CPU board from a box and replace it with another CPU board—regardless of the manufacturer—and have it come up and running with fairly minimal effort.

Feb28

VICTORY Might Not Be a Win for Everybody

VICTORY Might Not Be a Win for Everybody

Open standards are easy to love. With a common, defined computing system, anybody can port their applications to them and the software syncs beautifully, simplifying upgrades and providing flexibility in customers’ choice of supplier.

One U.S. Army crack at open standards provides a good example of the expectation, which was to correct the problems created by the bolted-on approach of field equipment on vehicles. Unfortunately, like far too many of such standards, the Vehicular Integration for C4ISR/EW Interoperability, or VICTORY, falls flat on implementation.

Nov22

Retrofit or Start From Scratch? It's Not a Simple Choice

Retrofit or Start From Scratch? It's Not a Simple Choice

The U.S. Army is upgrading, recapitalizing and redeploying materiel, with electronics a key part of the process.

It seems like a simple choice. You need to upgrade a platform’s computing capabilities—whether on a ground vehicle, a fast-delivery ship, a signal’s intelligence airplane or in a server room—but some of the existing hardware still is salvageable. Rather than do a complete upgrade from scratch, it is possible to leverage much of the existing technology and retain existing racks, power supplies and mass storage in the retrofit.

Nov22

For Super-Dense, Extremely Rugged, High-Performance Embedded Computers, Intel beats ARM Hands Down

For Super-Dense, Extremely Rugged, High-Performance Embedded Computers, Intel beats ARM Hands Down

We’re processor-agnostic, but Intel’s processor evolution and upgrade path is superior to ARM. Customers can count on smooth longevity and lifecycle.

For a long time, General Micro Systems (GMS) prided itself on being “processor independent.” We weren’t an Intel house or a Motorola house or a SPARC house. We would design our products to operate with every major processor that was out there. We were processor-agnostic; we didn’t care which one!