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PCI-express based mezzanine board

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GE Fanuc Embedded Systems Inc. is set to release a new mezzanine standard working group called the ‘VITA 56’.

VITA 56 is a predominately PCI-express based mezzanine board similar in dimensions to a PCI Mezzanine Card (PMC), allowing it to be used on VME and CompactPCI boards, but borrowing heavily from the functional characteristics of an AMC.

These boards will be fully de-pluggable/hot-swappable without removing the carrier, will offer a level of manageability similar to AMC and will include support for many high-speed serial fabrics.

"There is much work to be done and we will receive help from the VITA community in the development of a specification that all will find beneficial, said Senior Design Engineer for GE Fanuc Embedded Systems, David S. Slaton.

"Right now we are working with preliminary designs and demo boards and hosts. As the proposed specification becomes a reality, we will be requiring many levels of testing to ensure we have complete interoperability."

"VITA's continuing goal is to unite manufacturers and users through the acceptance and implementation of open technology standards," said VITA Technical Director, John Rynearson.

"We are very excited about the promise of the VITA 56 working group and appreciate the leadership role that GE Fanuc Embedded Systems has taken in this group."

VITA 56-based boards will cover a wide range in terms of their functionality and include the following categories:

* Telecom connectivity (ATM/POS (OC-3/12/48), T1/E1, VoIP, GbE)

* Processors (CPUs, DSPs and FPGAs)

* Network communication processors (NPUs)

* Network communications co-processors (classification, security or intrusion detection)

* Mass storage.

VITA 56 enables a modular building block design for both industry standard and proprietary Host Boards. This specification enables larger markets with more unique functions and creates economies of scale that lower prices.

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