Digital video and image processing

Louise Smyth

Smaller MicroTCA systems are used primarily for digital video and image processing, in automation and machine control systems and electronic signal processing. 

Applications in these areas often require just one or two AdvancedMC modules, but high data rates over the backplane are still necessary.

That’s why Pentair has joined forces with the Gesellschaft für Netzwerk- und Automatisierungs-Technologie mbH (N.A.T.) to develop a new 2-slot Schroff MicroTCA system. 

The 'embedded MCH' (eMCH) used in this system allows for communication between the AdvancedMC modules and the system monitoring, including power and cooling management, thus ensuring a high level of reliability. In addition, the 1 GbE switch connected to the 1GbE uplink on the case front of the eMCH enables the system components to be linked directly into an existing network infrastructure.

The new 2-slot Schroff MicroTCA system is designed to accommodate one and two MicroTCA modules: Either one and two single full-size modules or one and two mid-size modules can be inserted into the EMC-shielded unit. 

Using a small form-factor integrated eMCH instead of a double-size pluggable MCH module reduces the overall dimensions of the system to a very compact 260mm width, 43mm height and 302 mm depth. 

The cooling unit consisting of four fans and air filters is installed to the right of the modules. Cold air is drawn in from the right and guided left through the system. An additional fan is located in the rear on the left next to the backplane, ensuring a cooling capacity of 150 W at an ambient temperature of +55°C.

An open-frame PSU matched to the system with a capacity of 150 W ensures consistent power supply. All ports are linked on the MicroTCA backplane for large data transfer between modules.

Simple construction of the system makes it very service-friendly; individual components are easy to replace or maintain. The top cover is removed by undoing a few screws, allowing the fan unit and air filter to be easily replaced. Small indentations in the base and top plates allow rubber feet (included) to be attached. This feature allows for stacking of multiple systems. Systems can also be equipped with 19-in brackets and fitted into a cabinet.