X-ES Announces QorIQ ARM Processor-Based Boards with Up to Eight 64-bit Cores

By Mike Ball / 17 May 2016
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X-ES XPedite6401 SBCExtreme Engineering Solutions (X-ES) has announced the company’s first NXP QorIQ ARM-based boards, the XPedite6401 XMC/PrPMC mezzanine module and the forthcoming XPedite6370 3U VPX Single Board Computer (SBC).

Supporting up to 16 GB of DDR4-2100 ECC SDRAM from its NXP LS1088A ARM processor with eight 64-bit ARM A53 cores, the XPedite6401 is designed for a wide variety of applications that demand low-power consumption coupled with high-performance processing, such as unmanned vehicles.

The NXP QorIQ ARM processors, built on the Layerscape architecture, provide next-generation processing performance with the efficiency demanded by networking, telecom, wireless infrastructure, industrial control, military, and aerospace applications. The LS10xx and LS20xx processor families on X-ES ARM-based single board computers and processor mezzanines are available in two, four, and eight-core configurations for scalable processing power and minimal power consumption, offering the most advantageous blend of performance.

NXP includes both ARM and PowerPC processor architectures in their Layerscape product family, for hardware and software compatibility across a networked system or application. This unique, core-agnostic architecture incorporates an optimum core, whether it is ARM or Power Architecture, for the given application.

Layerscape’s available I/O, such as multiple Gigabit Ethernet ports, multiple PCI Express ports, USB, and SATA, as well as ARM’s ultra-low power advantages, allow for an embedded processing solution without compromises.

ARM has long been the standard of excellence in low-power processing, and NXP has recently committed to additional improvements in ARM processing performance. This includes adding support for 64-bit processors in ARMv8, which includes A53 and A57 cores.

With the recent of addition of the A72 core to replace the A57 in higher performance applications, NXP has further enhanced the appeal and computing capabilities of ARM for the embedded computing market.

ARM TrustZone is integrated into Layerscape devices, including support for Secure Boot, Tamper Detection, and Access Control for memory and peripherals. Secure Boot can prevent unsigned code from being executed, rather than permitting any arbitrary code to run.

ARM TrustZone can execute in secure and non-secure states, partitioning resources such as memory and cache, based on the application’s state of execution. This expands the capabilities of ARM multi-core devices for applications that require secure and unsecure tasks.

X-ES leverages the ARM TrustZone security features and increased processing performance of 64-bit ARM Cortex cores, without sacrificing on power consumption, along with a familiar Linux or Wind River VxWorks environment, to provide ideal embedded computing solutions wherever low-power applications are required.

The XPedite6401 XMC/PrPMC is the first ARM-based processor module from X-ES. It features the latest NXP QorIQ 64-bit multicore ARM processor, targeting the LS1043A quad-core ARM A53 processor. It is designed with a focus on long life cycle support and future compatibility with the recently announced NXP LS1088A octal-core A53 and LS1046A quad-core A72 processors. The XPedite6401 will provide a scalable processing solution to meet a range of project needs and thermal requirements.

The XPedite6401’s P14 pinout is compatible with many previous X-ES products, giving customers the ability to upgrade XMC/PrPMC modules with a current ARM processor to take advantage of the latest in low-power, high-performance-per-watt processing. It can be built with both P16 and P14, providing up to four 1000BASE-T Ethernet ports.

For users requiring additional Ethernet ports or faster connections, the XPedite6401 can be built optionally with a QSGMII and XFI connection to P16, providing four Gigabit Ethernet ports and one 10 Gigabit Ethernet port. The XPedite6401’s LS1088 processor configuration can be built with two QSGMII and two XFI connections to P16.

The XPedite6401 will soon be followed by the XPedite6370, a 3U VPX ARM-based single board computer. Leveraging the high performance-per-watt of the ARM core processors makes the XPedite6401 and XPedite6370 ideally-suited for lower power applications, where performance-per-watt is at a premium.

Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact