MicroTCA specialist aims at Europe

Paul Boughton

A US company specialising in systems based on microTCA technology has set up a new headquarters in Europe and launched a chassis based on the latest version of the specification. Nick Flaherty reports

Vadatech, a privately owned company from Nevada, specialises in complete systems based around microTCA. This uses the mezzanine AMC cards from the larger Advanced TCA standard on their own in smaller racks and provides advantages by saving space, increasing reliability and reducing power consumption.

The company set up its European headquarters in Southampton, UK in November to support customers and its four distributors in Europe. While a lot of the early work in the US was around niche designs in defence and telecoms applications, the company is seeing increasing interest in application servers and cloud computing from the reliability and hotswap capabilities without the size and cost of ATCA.[Page Break]

“Having such a strong position within the US market, we felt it was time to broaden our reach and maximise the value of the product range,” said Saeed Karamooz, founder and CEO of VadaTech. “Having a local presence in Europe will substantially improve our ability to support the growing customer base in the region. This is one of a series of strategic investments designed to strengthen our position within the MicroTCA and ATCA ecosystem.”

There is also a growing opportunity in VME replacement to make use of higher performance silicon without the cost of moving to a switch fabric such as VPX. One Vadatech customer replaced four VME boards with just two of the smaller AMC modules.

The company has also launched a chassis for the coming MTCA.4 specification. This defines MicroRTM Rear Transition Modules and enhancements for precision timing. While defined and adopted by the scientific community, particularly for high-energy physics, it is finding its way into aggregation layer, video and service-based applications.[Page Break]

“We see MTCA.4 having a strong future, both within the scientific community and out in industry,” said Karamooz. “We have been pleased to see such strong interest in the product line and have developed the VT81x chassis range to provide the reliability required across a range of scaling options.”

The first MicroTCA chassis in the range, the VT811, is shipping now and supports 12 AMCs/RTMs in an 8U 19” rack-mount enclosure with full redundancy. Features include the use of aluminium construction to reduce weight, carefully designed airflow to avoid hot-spots, and an internal cable channel to ease installation. Two further products were announced at the same time; the VT812 is a 6-bay chassis retaining full redundancy whilst achieving a 40% space saving, while the VT813 is a 12-bay high power unit capable of supporting 4000W of AC power. Both of these products are available to order now, with further MTCA.4 products due to be announced in the first half of next year.

For more information, visit www.vadatech.com