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SBC for 486-based embedded systems

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article image CoreModule 420 -- best value.

AMPRO Computers, represented by Micromax , has announced the CoreModule 420 PC/104 single board computer (SBC) as the next step in its roadmap that keeps 486-based embedded systems in production through 2010.

Manufacturers of medical, military, transportation and industrial systems are not forced into expensive re-design and qualification projects for high-performance CPUs now that Ampro has a simple resolution to their 486 end-of-life (EOL) notices.

The new CoreModule 420 is the best value for space-constrained embedded applications that require four serial ports (two of which support RS485), 10/100BaseT Ethernet, and video on a single board.

The CoreModule 420 is specially designed to be a migration product. The I/O addresses and IRQ mappings allow it to be easily configured to match the setup of many different legacy solutions.

The memory hole is configurable to enable the use of legacy PC/104 (ISA bus) peripheral cards originally used with 386 and 486 systems having very small memory configurations.

Ampro has also designed-in 768kB of on-board Flash memory which is accessible to the user and bootable, which means that some types of applications do not require additional Flash memory in the system in the form of CompactFlash or DiskOnChip.

Finally, with on-board Ethernet and video, two RS232/485 ports, and two more RS232-only ports, the CoreModule 420 also replaces up to three cards in a PC/104 stack.

The CoreModule 420 PC/104 single board system is based on ST Microelectronics' STPC Atlas microprocessor running at 133MHz.

CoreModule 420 provides four RS232 serial ports, two of which support RS485, along with eight general-purpose I/O (GPIO) pins, EPP/ECP parallel port, one USB 1.1 port, PS/2 keyboard and mouse interfaces, floppy and Ultra/DMA 33 IDE disk interfaces, 10/100BaseT Ethernet interface, and a high-resolution 2D video controller with CRT and TFT flat panel interfaces.

CoreModule 420 provides 64MB soldered SODIMM DRAM along with a byte-wide socket for a DiskOnChip 2000 bootable flash drive and Type II CompactFlash socket.

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