PCI Express Serial Communication Cards

ACCES I/O Products (San Diego, CA) has released a new family of isolated PCI Express serial communication cards — the PCIe-ICM Series. These PCI Express cards feature a selection of 4 or 2-ports of isolated, software selectable, RS-232, RS-422, and RS-485 serial protocols. 2kV isolation is provided between channels and between the PC and bus lines on all signals. The cards feature a x1 lane PCI Express connector which can be used in any available ×1, ×2, ×4, ×8, ×12, or ×16 PCI Express expansion slot.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers

Adapting ATCA Technology to Mil/Aero Applications

The military’s transition to Network-Centric Warfare (NCW) has created an enormous demand for improved networking and performance capabilities for ground mobile command and control applications. Military success now depends on the ability to communicate actionable information among command centers, troops in the field, UAVs and other military assets. Although new technologies are continually being developed to meet military demands, this transition to NCW has created new uses for existing technologies, a few of which have been used for many years in the commercial realm before making the move into military applications.

Posted in: Articles, RFM Catchall, Articles, Electronics & Computers, Telecommunications, Defense industry, Military vehicles and equipment, Unmanned aerial vehicles

The Evolution of CompactPCI From Parallel to Serial I/O

The true worth of an industry standard is measured in its ability to stand the test of time. From the onset, the system configuration, hardware components, and integration strategy all need to be built upon the inherent principles of flexibility, modernization, and efficiency.

Posted in: Articles, Articles, Electronics & Computers, Architecture, Computer software / hardware, Technical reference

Hybrid Energy Storage System Designed for Tanks and Stryker Vehicles

International Battery has been given a contract from the U.S. Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) to develop a hybrid energy storage system for combat tanks and Stryker armored vehicles. The hybrid battery system incorporates lithium iron phosphate cells (for energy) and ultracapacitors (for power).

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, Lithium-ion batteries, Ultracapacitors and supercapacitors, Suppliers, Hybrid electric vehicles, Military vehicles and equipment

Test Systems Simulate Several Impact Scenarios

Lansmont Corp. engineers have developed the active impact surface design technology for several test machines currently installed at the Army Research Laboratory in Adelphi, Maryland and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) located at Valparaiso, Florida’s Eglin Air Force Base.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aircraft operations, Impact tests, Test equipment and instrumentation, Test facilities, Military aircraft

Data Fusion of Geographically Dispersed Information for Test and Evaluation

Test and evaluation relies on computer collection and manipulation of data from a myriad of sensors and sources. More computing power allows for increases in the breadth and depth of the information collected. The same computing power must assist in identifying, ordering, storing, and providing easy access to that data. Fast networking allows large clusters of high-performance computing resources to be brought to bear on test and evaluation. This increase in fidelity has correspondingly increased the volumes of data that tests are capable of generating.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Technology, Data exchange, Data management, Test procedures

Microelectromechanical System (MEMS) Switch Test

Analyzing microelectromechanical system (MEMS) switch behavior is a new field of study that guides the production of MEMS switches. One issue of primary importance is the degradation of contact resistance over the lifetime of the device, and whether small variations in the resistance initially can be prognostically used to predict future performance. Unfortunately, commercially available equipment is limited by its data collection rate, and is not a realistic option to examine every cycle of a switch expected to potentially survive for several trillion cycles. In addition, these tests must be performed on tens to hundreds of switches, necessitating the need for a parallel measurement solution.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Microelectricmechanical device, Switches, Test procedures

Test and Evaluation Uses of Heterogeneous Computing

T est and evaluation of current systems is a time-consuming process that reflects both the intricacies of the object of the test and the range of equipment, personnel, and environments required. Many argue that this process consumes far too much of the time that it takes to put new systems into the hands of the warfighters, and uses way too many resources without much obvious benefit for those in combat.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, CAD / CAM / CAE, Computer simulation, Test procedures, Military aircraft, Military vehicles and equipment

Process for Testing Aeromedical Equipment

Medical devices are designed to function in environmentally controlled locations, such as stationary hospitals, and not within the harsh, dynamic aircraft environment. Yet, the same medical devices used to care for patients in a hospital environment are often the most capable devices for patient care during transport from one facility to another. These missions are called aeromedical evacuation (AE) missions, and they provide life-sustaining care for a vast array of patients. However, because the devices are designed for a controlled environment, concerns they may adversely affect the operation of aircraft systems must be addressed. Conversely, the aircraft may adversely affect the proper operation and efficacy of the medical equipment. Failure of medical devices during in-flight medical care may result in exposing patients and aircrew to hazardous situations.

Posted in: Briefs, Physical Sciences, Architecture, Medical equipment and supplies, Aircraft operations, Risk assessments, Safety testing and procedures, Rescue and emergency vehicles and equipment

Gallium Nitride High-Power Electronics

Gallium nitride (GaN) high-power electronic (HPE) devices have the potential to outperform those made from 4H-silicon carbide (SiC), the polytype used for HPE devices, because it has a larger critical electric field, ξC, the field at which the device breaks down – 3.5 versus 2.5 MV/cm. This is due primarily to GaN’s larger energy gap, EG – 3.39 eV versus 3.25 eV. GaN also has a slightly larger electron mobility, μ – 930 versus 900 cm2/V·s.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Electronic equipment, High voltage systems, Performance upgrades, Conductivity, Materials properties