Redundant CompactPCI PlusIO SBC from MEN Micro Offers Safe Computing for Railway Operations - FOX 18 Quad Cities News and Weather

Redundant CompactPCI PlusIO SBC from MEN Micro Offers Safe Computing for Railway Operations

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Three Intel processors and safe QNX OS contribute to SIL 4 certification

BLUE BELL, Pa., July 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- MEN Micro Inc., a world-renowned provider of embedded computing and I/O solutions for mission-critical industrial, mobile and harsh environment applications, now offers a SIL 4 certified, redundant CompactPCI PlusIO SBC for the safe operating systems required in railway applications.  Incorporating three Intel Atom processors and a safe QNX operating system, the new COTS-based F75P provides onboard functional safety. 

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With both fail-safe and fail-silent architectures, the rugged SBC ensures safe computing during normal operation as well as when potential failures or faulty data are present. In fail-safe operations, the system shuts down completely if an error is detected, whereas it will still run, just not transmit incorrect data, for fail-silent operations.

The F75P's SIL 4 certification package, developed according to EN 5012x, reduces risks, time to market and NRE (non-recurring engineering) costs for designers employing the rugged SBC. Each package contains a user safety guide, safety case, an assessment report and certificate from TUV SUD, the German Technical Inspection Agency. Customer support is also included in the certification package.

Two independent Intel processors on the F75P offer redundant control, running the safe QNX BSP (board support package) with supervisory units to monitor environmental factors.  For example, should the board exceed the maximum operating temperature, the system is put into a safe state.

Implemented at the top most protocol layer, commonly called the black channel, the third Intel processor controls the I/O without interfacing with any safety protocols.  This enables reliable transmission of commands from the two control CPUs to the interfaces across an internal, FPGA-based Ethernet link.  System safety data is kept independent of the communication channel.

Standard front I/O on the third processor includes a VGA, two fast Ethernet and two USB interfaces.  One PCI Express and one SATA port as well as four USB and two Fast Ethernet interfaces are found at the rear.

All three processors are based on the Intel Atom E6xx family, and operate at up to 1.6 GHz.  Each of the two control CPUs offers independent 512 MB of DDR2 RAM memory.  The I/O processor offers 1 GB of DDR2 as well as 8 kb of non-volatile FRAM for logging system events, such as reset, over and under voltage as well as excessive temperatures.

With its CPU redundancy and flexible I/O, the compact, low-power F75P can replace multiprocessing systems, saving development costs as well as space and weight.

Two of the SBCs can be clustered within a system for increased availability options providing hot and cold standby. 

Based on the CompactPCI PlusIO architecture, the F75P serves as a bridge between legacy CompactPCI systems and newer, serial-based ones.

The F75P operates from -40 degrees C to +85 degrees C with qualified components and offers conformal coating for use in rugged environments. 

Technical Specifications:

  • SIL 4 certification package reduces NRE, risks and time to market
  • Three Intel processors and QNX OS for safe, redundant operation
  • Rugged SBC operates reliably in railway applications
  • Fail-safe and fail-silent architectures
  • -40 degrees C to +85 degrees C operation

For additional information, visit or contact Stephen Cunha, Phone: 215-542-9575; E-mail:

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UPCOMING TRADESHOW: InnoTrans, Hall 6.2/205; Sept 23 - 26, 2014; Berlin, Germany

READER SERVICE INQUIRIES: Please forward all reader service inquiries to Stephen Cunha, MEN Micro Inc., 860 Penllyn Blue Bell Pike; Blue Bell, PA 19422; E-mail:

About MEN Micro Inc.
Since its founding, MEN Micro has focused on innovation, reliability and flexibility to develop standard and custom computing solutions that employ the highest technology levels. The company's computing solutions are used in harsh mission- and safety-critical environments found in the transportation (rail, road, air, sea) and industrial (automation, power & energy, medical, mining) markets.

With more than 250 employees worldwide, MEN Micro provides a robust offering of highly reliable embedded COTS boards, rugged COMs, scalable box PCs, safe computers and supporting devices widely used in extreme environmental conditions.

In addition to its full customization support, the company's core competencies include x86 and RISC processor architectures, development rules for safe applications, analog I/O design, FPGA technology and Windows, Linux and real-time operating systems as well as RAMS and obsolescence management.

The company is certified to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 (environment), EN 9100 (aerospace) and IRIS (railway) quality management systems, provides systems according to ISO 7637-2 (road traffic) requirements and is a member of several industry associations, including VITA and PICMG.

Editorial Contact:
The Simon Group, Inc.
Beth Smith or Christina Sanchez
Phone: (215) 453-8700

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