The Key Features of VadaTech’s VT931 MicroTCA Chassis Platform

one month ago by Sam Holland

VadaTech has announced its VT931, a 4U (i.e. 7 inches-high), rugged MTCA.1 Chassis Platform with 12 Advanced Mezzanine Card slots. It is specifically designed to be used in a lot of military, aerospace, industrial and transportation applications.

VadaTech is one of the leading manufacturers of embedded computing solutions that design and manufacture board-level products to configurable application-ready systems.

It offers a wide range of MicroTCA (often shortened to ‘MTCA’) and AdvancedTCA chassis to meet the requirements of many industries, including communications, energy, industrial automation, medical, military, aerospace, research/physics, and transportation.

 

Product Features

The VT931 MicroTCA Chassis is a 4U rack unit (i.e. 7 inches-high) version of the VadaTech VT930 with an additional integrated removable upper cooling unit. It is an MTCA chassis that can accommodate up to 12 AMCs (6 full-size and 6 mid-size). It can also accept any Advanced Mezzanine Card (AMC)—be it AMC.0, AMC.1, AMC.2, AMC.3 and/or AMC.4.

The operating temperature of VT931 Rugged Chassis varies from −40°C to 70°C, and its physical dimensions are 19″ by 4U by 8.35 inches. It has perforated bottom and top covers for airflow from the upper fan tray. Since the fan tray is removable, it helps to easily maintain the system over time.

The chassis is designed to the MTCA.1 specification for rugged applications. MicroTCA is an open-standard embedded computing specification created by the PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group (PICMG). MCTA.1 relates to an Air-Cooled Rugged MicroTCA with a rugged latching system (MCTA.0 is the core specification).

The VT931 MicroTCA Chassis has dual redundant field-replaceable unit information and carrier locators. The carrier locator is assigned by easily-accessible mechanical dip switches, which, thanks to their removability, mean that the backplane can remain passive. The MicroTCA Carrier Hub (MCH) reads the locator via its private I²C (two-wire interface) bus.

 

VadaTech VT931 Chassis Platform

A VT931 MTCA Chassis Platform. Image courtesy of VadaTech.

 

Temperature Control

The VT931 has a single intelligent cooling unit: this is located at the top of the AMC slots in a pull configuration. It provides compact cooling, as the air is made to flow from bottom to top. It has a Dual Star 40 Gigabit Ethernet or peripheral component interconnect express (PCIe) Gen3 capable backplane, which is optimised for better signal integrity.

There are multiple temperature sensors in the chassis that monitor the intake and outtake air of temperature throughout the chassis. These sensors are monitored by the product’s management controller over the redundant Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI) bus.

 

Product Applications

Due to its rugged design, the VT931 Chassis can operate reliably in harsh usage environments, including extreme temperatures, strong vibrations or dusty conditions—which makes the product ideal for military, aerospace and industrial applications.

 

Closing Thoughts

As covered, the VT931 Rugged MicroTCA Chassis is designed to support up to 12 AMCs, and it has a Dual Star backplane configuration with 40GbE or PCIe Gen3 capability. Plus, the embedded cooling unit of the chassis provides compact cooling for a maximum density; and, as the cooling unit is integrated, this grants designer engineers more room to work with other electronics.

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