ADLINK, congatec, MSC Form PICMG COM Express Plug-and-Play Subcommittee

ADLINK Technology Inc., congatec AG, and MSC, have joined together to form a new PICMG COM Express plug and play subcommittee. The to-be-released COM Express Plug and Play Design Guide aims to increase the use of COM Express modules by defining a set of carrier design guidelines that enable plug-and-play support and increase compatibility between COM Express modules from various vendors. Jeff Munch, CTO of ADLINK Technology and Interim Chairman of the new subcommittee, expects this new PICMG carrier board design specification to release in February 2008.

After the release of the PICMG COM Express specification (COM.0), several manufacturers have filled the marketplace with a wide variety of COM Express modules. It soon became apparent that a plug-and-play specification was required to mitigate carrier board incompatibilities. Therefore, ADLINK, congatec AG, and MSC applied to the PICMG group for the creation of a subcommittee to define a COM Express Plug and Play Design Guide to increase adoption of the COM.0 standard through a plug-and-play carrier board design specification.

The basis of this subcommittee began in April 2007 when AAEON, ADLINK, Ampro, and congatec AG started the COM Express PnP Initiative which focused on carrier board design. Now this initiative has further evolved to address the incompatibilities seen between different vendors using proprietary carrier board designs by providing a definite specification to increase and streamline the adoption and use of COM Express products.

About COM Express
COM Express modules are highly integrated off-the-shelf building blocks based on a PCI Express bus architecture that plugs into custom made, application-specific carrier boards. COM Express basic modules measure just 95 mm x 125 mm and include generic functions such as video, audio, Ethernet, storage interfaces and USB ports that are needed for most applications. A custom designed carrier board complements the COM Express core module with the additional functionality required for specific applications.COM Express, a PICMG specification, is a result of the convergence of the latest technology standards based on serial differential signaling such as PCI Express, USB 2.0, Serial ATA, LVDS and Serial DVO implemented on an extremely compact Computer on Module. Moving from parallel buses such as PCI and IDE to serial buses such as PCI Express and SATA is a change on a scale of which has not been seen since PCI replaced ISA.

PICMG is a consortium of over 450 companies who collaboratively develop open specifications for high performance telecommunications and industrial computing applications. The members of the consortium have a long history of developing leading edge products for these industries. Founded in 1994, PICMG’s original mission was to extend the PCI standard, from the PCI Special Interest Group for use in non-traditional computer markets such as Industrial Automation, Medical, Military and Telecom. With the advent of fabric based transports PICMG specs have continued to evolve. This has resulted in a series of specifications that include CompactPCI(R), AdvancedTCA(R), AdvancedMC(TM), CompactPCI Express(TM), COM Express(TM) and SHB Express(TM). Each specification has a unique PICMG identifier. Details on each specification, including those under development can be found in our Specifications Directory. These specifications are represented by many leading edge products from PICMG member companies, details of which can be found in our Product Directory.

About congatec AG
congatec is an innovative and experienced manufacturer of COM Express, XTX and ETX embedded computer boards. The highly skilled employees have more than 200-manpower years of experience in the fast growing embedded computer industry. Based in Deggendorf Germany, the company’s objective is to engineer and market industrial computer modules based on standard form factors. congatec’s products are available for all business segments and industries. Customers can be found in industrial control, medical, automotive supplies, aircraft and transportation fields. Typical applications are machine control, vending machines and visualization terminals. congatec’s main know-how includes the support of our embedded BIOS features, excellent driver support as well as full-featured board support packages. Customers receive complete product lifecycle support starting early during the design-in stage. congatec products are manufactured by specialized contract manufacturers who fulfill the latest quality standards.

About ADLINK Technology
ADLINK Technology provides a wide range of embedded computing products and services to the test & measurement, automation & process control, gaming, communications, medical, network security, homeland security, and transportation industries. ADLINK products include integrated building blocks for Industrial Application Platforms: ISA, PCI, PXI, and PCI Express-based data acquisition and I/O; vision and motion control; and AdvancedTCA, CompactPCI, PICMG, and COM Express modules for industrial computing. ADLINK strives to minimize the total cost of ownership (TCO) of its customers by providing customization and system integration services, maintaining low manufacturing costs, and extending the lifecycle of its products. ADLINK is a global company with headquarters and manufacturing in Taiwan; R&D and integration in Taiwan, China, and the US; and an extensive network of worldwide sales and support offices. ADLINK is ISO-9001, ISO-14001, and TL9000 certified, is an Associate Member of the Intel(R) Communications Alliance, an Executive Member of PICMG, a Sponsor Member of the PXI Systems Alliance, and an Associate Member of the LXI Consortium. ADLINK is a publicly traded company listed on the TAIEX Taiwan Stock Exchange.