SBC offers choice of multicore processor options

Paul Boughton

GE’s Intelligent Platforms business has launched a 3U OpenVPX board that supports a wide range of multiprocessor options for different embedded power requirements, writes Nick Flaherty.

The SBC314 rugged 3U OpenVPX single board computer offers a choice of multicore processor options to enable an optimum performance per watt solution to be deployed in applications such as mission computing and ISR (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance).

The SBC314 is available with Freescale Semiconductor’s Power Architecture QorIQ AMP (advanced multiprocessing) CPUs. The version featuring the T1042 4-core e5500-based processor is designed for environments requiring minimal power consumption, while the board using the T2081 8-virtual core e6500 processor is designed to deliver maximum performance.

Designed as a straightforward, cost-effective upgrade/technology insertion opportunity from earlier Power Architecture 3U OpenVPX single board computers from GE for programs requiring either additional processing capability or lower SWaP (size, weight and power) characteristics, the SBC314 is further evidence of GE’s commitment to maximising the long term value of customer investments.

The T2081 processor’s e6500 ST core offers a 50% performance improvement compared to the e500mc core in the P4080 processor which is at the heart of the SBC314’s predecessor, the SBC312. It also provides the potential for up to a 5x performance improvement if the AltiVec co-processor is fully utilised, delivering up to 48GFLOPS of capability for appropriate applications. The AltiVec co-processor also delivers value for older code bases, such as those developed for systems using the Freescale MPC7448 processor.

The T1042 processor is designed to function at less than 7.5W, allowing this version of the SBC314 to operate with a typical total board power consumption of less than 20W – half that of a comparable SBC312.

The SBC314 will also provide support for VxWorks653 from Wind River, allowing it to be configured as part of a system requiring certification to DO-254 and DO-178.

Designed specifically for harsh environments, the SBC314 is available in five air- and conduction-cooled ruggedisation levels, and also offers VITA 48 formats for 2-level maintenance (2LM) requirements.

Fully compatible with OpenVPX (VITA 65), the SBC314 offers multiple connectivity options via its highly configurable PCI Express fabric ports enabling a range of scalable solutions from single host and peripherals to larger multiprocessor systems. In addition the SBC314 supports a diverse I/O set that includes Gigabit Ethernet, COM ports, USB 2.0, SATA and GPIO.

Further incremental system resource expansion is provided via an XMC/PMC capable mezzanine site which offers the option of having either XMC I/O or PMC I/O routed to the VPX backplane connectors.