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CAN-ready industrial PC sips under three Watts

Mar 16, 2011 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 3 views

Artila Electronics announced an ARM9-based, Linux-ready industrial box computer with dual, isolated CAN bus interfaces, plus the SocketCAN open source CAN stack. The Matrix-522 is equipped with an Atmel AT91SAM9G20 processor clocked at 400MHz, and offers 64MB SDRAM, 128MB of flash, a microSD slot, failover support, an under three-Watt power draw, plus paired sets of Ethernet, USB, and serial ports.

The Matrix-522 is designed for industrial automation, transportation, in-vehicle, and building automation applications, says Artila. The computer builds upon the same processor and basic design used by Artila's earlier Linux-ready industrial box computers, including the Matrix-518 (pictured at right) that was announced in December.

Like the serial-oriented Matrix-518, the Matrix-522 is equipped with the ARM9-based Atmel AT91SAM9G20 processor clocked to 400MHz, and offers the same allotment of 64MB SDRAM, 128MB NAND flash, and 2MB data flash. The latter is used for system backup, and is designed to automatically boot if the NAND flash system fails. In case of failure, the system displays a menu-driven program to help users restore NAND flash images from a USB pen drive or an SD card in the newly available internal microSD slot, says Artila.


Other similarities with the Matrix-518 include the inclusion of dual 10/100 Ethernet ports, dual USB 2.0 host ports, and 21 pins of GPIO. However, instead of offering eight RS-232/422/485 serial ports, the Matrix-522 supplies only two, but it also provides dual isolated CAN ports.

Matrix-522 front port detail

(Click to enlarge)

The 6.3 x 4.1 x 1.26-inch (160 x 104 x 32mm) box is designed to be DIN-rail or wall-mounted, says Artila. The PC is said to accept 9 to 40VDC input and consume under three Watts ([email protected]). Other features include a watchdog timer, real-time clock, and buzzer, the company adds.

Matrix-522 rear port detail

The Matrix-522 is pre-installed with Linux 2.6.29, as well as the Busybox utility collection. The distribution includes SocketCAN, an open source CAN driver and network stack, says Artila. SocketCAN uses a network model on the CAN interface to allow multiple applications to access a single CAN device simultaneously, says the company.

Matrix-522 software architecture

In addition, the CD that ships with the Matrix-522 provides a CANopen library and CANFestival software for developing CANopen applications, says Artila. The distribution includes the UBI file-system, which is said to to provide improved performance and longer lifetime for NAND flash compared to JFFS2. Other integrated utilities include Webmin, and the GNU tool chain, complete with a C/C++ cross compiler and Glibc, says the company.


The Matrix-522 appears to be available now at an undisclosed price. More information may be found at the Artila Matrix box computer page, as well as in this Matrix-522 data sheet PDF.

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