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New VPX Boards Pairs Configurable Virtex-5 FPGA with PCIe Interface for High-Performance Computing

Acromag’s new VPX FPGA boards deliver maximum performance for accelerated algorithm processing or execution of complex logic routines in embedded computer systems.

Acromag’s new VPX-VLX series of 3U VPX FPGA boards feature a configurable Xilinx® Virtex™-5 FPGA enhanced with multiple high-speed memory buffers and a high-throughput PCIe interface. Field I/O interfaces to the FPGA via the rear P2 connector and/or with optional front mezzanine plug-in I/O modules. The result is a powerful and flexible signal processor card that is capable of rapidly executing custom instruction sets and algorithms. Typical uses include signal intelligence, image processing, hardware simulation, and communications. The boards start at $7100 with several options for FPGA logic capacity and conduction-cooled extended temperature operation.

“These VPX Virtex-5 FPGA boards combine very advanced signal processing capabilities with high speed data transfer for real-time computing applications” remarked Joseph Primeau, Acromag’s embedded sales and marketing director.

Three models provide a choice of logic-optimized FPGAs to match the performance requirements. Cards can be ordered with a Xilinx VLX85T, VLX110T, or VLX155T FPGA featuring up to 155,000 logic cells and 128 DSP48E slices. Each model is available in a format designed for use in air-cooled or conduction-cooled systems suitable for -40 to 85°C operation.

Large, high-speed memory banks provide efficient data handling. Dual-ported 1M x 64-bit SRAM enables high-speed DMA transfers to/from the CPU while simultaneously writing data to memory. Generous 32M x 32-bit DDR2 SDRAM buffers give the FPGA fast access to I/O port data. FPGA code loads from the PCIe bus or from on-board flash memory. A double fat pipe 4-lane PCIe interface ensures very fast data throughput.

64 I/O lines are accessible through the rear (P2) connector. A series of AXM extension modules are available to provide additional front-end A/D, RS-485, CMOS, or LVDS I/O channels through a mezzanine connector on the front of the board.

Acromag’s Engineering Design Kit provides utilities to help users develop custom programs, load VHDL into the FPGA and to establish DMA transfers between the FPGA and the CPU. The kit includes a compiled FPGA file and example VHDL code provided as selectable blocks with examples for the local bus interface, read/writes, and change-of-state interrupts to the PCI bus. A JTAG interface allows users to perform on-board VHDL simulation. Further analysis is supported with a ChipScope™ Pro interface.

For easy integration of the boards with embedded Windows® applications, Acromag developed a DLL driver software package for compatibility with Microsoft® Visual C++™, and Visual Basic. Sample files with “C” source demonstration programs provide easy-to-use tools to test operation of the module.

For real time and open source applications, Acromag offers C libraries for VxWorks®, Linux®, and other operating systems. The libraries provide generic routines (source code included) to handle reads, writes, interrupts, and other functions. Demonstration programs enable the developer to quickly exercise the I/O modules before attaching the routines to the application program. This diagnostic tool can save hours of troubleshooting and debugging. The Linux example programs are a free download.

Acromag has designed and manufactured measurement and control products for more than 50 years. They are an AS9100 and ISO-9001 certified international corporation with a world headquarters near Detroit, Michigan and a global network of sales representatives and distributors. Acromag offers a complete line of embedded I/O products including bus boards, mezzanine modules, wiring accessories, and software. Industries served include defense, aerospace, manufacturing, transportation, energy, and scientific research

About the Company: 
Acromag is a multi-million dollar international corporation that combines more than 50 years of process monitoring and control experience with a solid background in high-tech computer design.
For more information about Acromag products, call Inside Sales at (248) 295-0310 or Marketing Communications at (248) 295-0310, FAX (248) 624-9234. E-mail [email protected] or write Acromag at P.O. Box 437, Wixom, MI 48393-7037 USA.

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