Features

High-Speed Ethernet Communication for PLCs

AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) has released the H4-ECOM100 Ethernet communication module for the DirectLOGIC DL405 PLC. The H4-ECOM100 can be inserted into any I/O slot of any local DL405 base, including expansion bases when using the DL450 CPU and -1 bases to implement master/slave Ethernet communication at 10 or 100 Mbit data rates. The module supports the industry-standard MODBUS TCP/IP Client/Server protocol, and IP and IPX protocols. This allows a DL405 PLC with an H4-ECOM100 module to serve as a client (master) or as a server (slave) on a MODBUS TCP/IP Ethernet network.

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Multi-Processor VME64x Computer With PowerPC Processor

Themis Computer (Fremont, CA) has introduced the TPPC64 multi-processor VME64x computer using IBM’s 970FX Superscalar RISC processor. It can be configured with one or two 1.8-GHz PowerPC 970FX processors. The 970FX features VPX SIMD Vector Processing Units, bringing enterprise server-class processing power to bandwidth-intensive VME64x applications.

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Multicores Affect Algorithm Choices

Design engineers soon will need to bridge the growing gap between hardware reality and software capabilities in the highperformance computing (HPC) realm as the use of multicore microprocessors grows. If your software development or sourcing plans haven’t anticipated these development situations, your applications may have a shorter life than you had planned. The 2006 version of technical computing “reality” is an inexpensive dual-core processor from AMD or Intel on a desktop system, or a dual- or quad-core RISC processor from Sun or IBM running on a server. In 2007, we should expect to see inexpensive quad-core processors from AMD and Intel, and processors with up to eight or more cores in 2008. These small symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) systems will be a far cry from the proprietary $500,000+ SMP systems of a few years ago. This technology transition has big implications for the “democratization” of computing power. On the horizon are four- to eightcore systems that cost only a few thousand dollars and sit on the desk of every design engineer.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Application Briefs

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Multi-Fabric Switching Enables New Architectures for Military Systems

With multiple switched interconnects gaining momentum in the embedded space, selecting just one to address a wide range of military systems requirements is not easy. Individually, switched fabrics such as Gigabit Ethernet (GbE), Serial RapidIO (SRIO), and PCI Express (PCIe) have their own particular technical merits, and each is poised to carve out a piece of the interconnect market. However, when combined in nextgeneration Serial Switched Backplanes (SSB) like VPX (VITA 46/48), multi-fabric switching can enable powerful new military architectures by leveraging ‘best of breed’ interconnect technology to address specific application requirements ( Figure 1).

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PCI Cards Feature 4 GigaSamples of Memory

Two 8-bit resolution arbitrary waveform generator cards with up to 4 gigasamples of onboard memory are available from Strategic Test Corp. (Woburn, MA).

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PCI Single-Board Computer Features Dual-Core Processors

Diversified Technology (Ridgeland, MS) has released the LBC9426 single-board computer based on the Intel® E7520 chipset.

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Dual-Core VME Single-Board Computer Delivers Low Voltage

Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing (Leesburg, VA) offers the SVME/DMV-1901 6U VME single-board computer with the Intel® Core™ Duo processor running at speeds of 1.67 and 2.0 GHz.

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