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VME Board Combines VXS I/O with Dual 215 MHz ADCs and FPGAs for On-Board Signal Processing

Pentek's 88,000 sq. ft. facility in Upper Saddle River, NJ
Pentek's 88,000 sq. ft. facility in Upper Saddle River, NJ

Scottsdale, AZ - November 15, 2004 - Pentek, Inc., the industry pioneer of VME board-level technology, today launched a new dual-channel 6U VMEbus signal acquisition and processing board with sampling rates to 215 MHz. Featuring some of the fastest 12-bit analog-to-digital (A/D) converters in the market, the Pentek Model 6822 supports these data rates with several high-speed interface options. Up to four Front Panel Data Port (FPDP II) connectors deliver output data at up to 320 Mbytes/sec each. A VXS interface provides two 1.25-Gbytes/sec switched serial fabric ports to the VME backplane.

Targeting extremely high-performance DSP tasks, the Pentek Model 6822 couples its high-speed A/Ds to two Xilinx Virtex-II Pro FPGAs, each supported by 16 Mbytes of Flash and 128 Mbytes of SDRAM. Each 128 Mbyte SDRAM can be used as a circular buffer digital delay or as real-time transient capture memory.

Each XC2VP50 FPGA provides the equivalent of 6M system gates, allowing users to perform critical real-time, high-frequency signal processing tasks such as demodulation, convolution, filtering and data analyzing operations on board. This can reduce the data rate of off-board traffic in many applications. Other applications can take advantage of high-speed I/O at both the front panel and backplane that support the board's highest data rates.

A key feature of the Model 6822 is the VXS port on the P0 backplane connector, which makes it one of the first boards in the industry to offer VXS. The port follows the VITA 41 specification for VME backplane switched serial fabrics and supports several different protocols through installation of one of the various fabric IP cores now available. The initial release of the Model 6822 supports Serial RapidIO (VITA 41.2) and the Xilinx Aurora link layer protocols over the VXS port. There are plans to extend support to include PCI-Express.

The front panel accepts two analog inputs and delivers digital output samples over two FPDP or FPDP II connectors. An optional two-slot version of the card offers two more FPDP or LVDS connectors for digital output data.

As an alternative to the front-panel data connectors, an optional 24-pair LVDS data channel through the P2 backplane connector is also available. In addition, a front panel sync/timing bus facilitates synchronous, triggered data acquisition across multiple boards. This capability is essential for multi-channel applications such as radar beamforming and direction finding.

Fully Ruggedized Versions Become Standard

The Model 6822 marks the extension of Pentek's board offerings into the full range of ruggedization levels. The board is available in commercial (L0), air-cooled (L1, L2) and conduction-cooled (L3, L4) versions.

"This is Pentek's first product designed from the ground up for multiple versions to cover the full range of environmental specs," says Rodger Hosking, vice president of Pentek, Inc. "These new boards can operate in a broad range of severe environments, including unmanned military reconnaissance vehicles, airborne radars and maritime communications systems, providing the most demanding customers with the same state-of-the-art technology available to commercial users."

FPGA Resources

The Model 6822 includes full development tool support for the on-board FPGAs, featuring Pentek's GateFlow FPGA resources. Tools include the GateFlow FPGA Design Kit supporting user-defined FPGA algorithms; the GateFlow IP Core Library for high-performance FFTs (Fast Fourier Transform); digital receivers and radar pulse compression algorithms; and GateFlow factory installed IP Cores so customers can take immediate advantage of FPGA technology with zero FPGA development effort. One such GateFlow offering, the Wideband Digital Receiver IP Core 422, offers a complete FPGA-based digital down-converter function for the Model 6822 with user-programmable filter coefficients, tuning frequency and decimation.

About Pentek

Pentek develops, manufactures and markets innovative commercial and rugged DSP systems to original equipment manufacturers, distributors and value-added resellers. Pentek offers powerful VME, VXS, PMC, XMC, cPCI, PCI, VIM and VXI boards for data acquisition, software radio and digital signal processing featuring Texas Instruments C6000 DSPs, Motorola G4 PowerPCs and Xilinx FPGAs. Pentek's I/O includes A/Ds, D/As, digital receivers and upconverters and more. Pentek equips products with high-performance interfaces including Serial RapidIO, FPDP-II and RACEway and offers extensive DSP software support.

Source: Pentek