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Rugged AMC module taps dual-core 1.2GHz QorIQ

Jun 30, 2011 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Kontron announced its first AdvancedMC (AMC) processor module equipped with Freescale Semiconductor's QorIQ processors. The single-width, Linux-ready AM4120 module incorporates: a dual-core, 1.2GHz QorIQ P2020 processor with extended longevity support; up to 4GB soldered DDR3 SDRAM; four SERDES lines; three gigabit Ethernet channels; flexible boot options; and under 17-Watt power consumption, says the company.

The Kontron AM4120 AMC (Advanced Mezzanine Card) is intended to be used in MicroTCA and AdvancedTCA (ATCA) systems for cost-sensitive data plane and control plane applications, says Kontron. Applications said to include industrial automation, medical, networking, telecom, military transportation, and avionics.

Kontron sells various MicroTCA systems that can incorporate the AM4120 module, including the entry-level Kontron OM6060 platform (pictured above right). The OM6060 enables implementation of PCI Express (PCIe) and SRIO point-to-point fabrics in combination with the Kontron AM4901 unmanaged MicroTCA Carrier Hub (MCH). The AM4901 provides Ethernet connectivity to all AMC slots, and can combine the AM4120 module with various I/O cards, DSP cards, and processor boards, says Kontron.

Kontron AM4120

(Click to enlarge)

The AM4120 is based on the QorIQ P2020 system on chip (SoC), one of the first of Freescale's QorIQ line of processors to reach market. The P2020 is equipped with dual e500 Power Architecture (PowerPC) cores clocked to up to 1.2 GHz. The P2020 has appeared in products including Emerson's COMX-P2020 COM Express module and Portwell's Linux-ready CAK-2000 network appliance.

The 7.15 x 2.89-inch (181.5 x 73.5mm) AM4120 offers exceptional longevity on various levels, says Kontron. First, Freescale offers P2020 processor availability until at least 2018. In addition, a dedicated Module Management Controller (MMC) is said to support basic IPMI commands for board management, enabling operators to monitor the status of the module.

Reliability is further enhanced by "careful component selection," as well as a micro-SDHC socket that is "not impacted by regular flash discontinuation," says the company.

The module is equipped with 2GB or 4GB of soldered, ECC DDR3 SDRAM, with 8GB available upon special request. The redundant universal U-Boot bootloader is available, as well as flexible boot options, says Kontron. These are said to include powering up from an "easily exchangeable" micro-SDHC card, as well as from 16MB NOR flash or soldered 1-2GB NAND flash boot options. There is also 128KB of persistent MRAM memory, with 512KB available by request.

AM4120 block diagram

(Click to enlarge)

The AM4120 features four SERDES lines routed to AMC ports 4-7. These are said to be configurable as PCIe, supporting root complex or end point modes. They can also be configured as SRIO host or agent ports "for applications which require close programming to the chip without extensive overhead," says Kontron.

The Kontron AM4120 supports up to three gigabit Ethernet channels routed to AMC port 0, says the company. There are also said to be dual RJ45 gigabit Ethernet ports on the front panel, or optionally, one of the interfaces can be routed to AMC ports 0 and 1. An RS232 port also faces front.

If desired, the module can be used in system configurations without MCH management, thereby further reducing development costs and speeding up system development, according to Kontron.

The power supply offers 12 Volt payload and 3.3 Volt management power, and the module is said to run on less than 17 Watts. The AM4120 supports temperatures of 32 to 131 deg. F (0 to 55 deg. C), and extended temperature range support is said to be available "on a project basis." Shock and vibration resistance are also said to be implemented.


The Kontron AdvancedMC AM4120 will be available in sample quantities beginning in July at an undisclosed price. Board support packages (BSPs) are available with Freescale's Linux distribution, as well as Wind River's VxWorks 6.9, says Kontron.

More information, including a full datasheet and spec sheet, may be found at Kontron's AM4120 page.

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