PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group (PICMG) Holds First AdvancedTCA Interoperability Workshop

11/6/2002 - The PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group (PICMG®) recently completed its inaugural AdvancedTCATM (Advanced Telecom Computing Architecture) interoperability workshop, for companies developing products for the pending PICMG 3.0 specification. The October 29-30 event in Tempe, Ariz. included prototype equipment from nine companies, including shelves, backplanes and boards.

First in a series of workshops, this event tested the electromechanical aspects of the draft specification, including form factor, fit, and power distribution. PICMG 3.0 is currently in its final draft stages and is expected to be published before the end of 2002. Additional interoperability workshops that focus on different areas of AdvancedTCA are planned for the future.

Participants in the October Workshop included CG Mupac, Elma Electronics, Force Computers, Hewlett Packard, Intel, Motorola, RadiSys, Rittal/Kaparel and Schroff/Pentair Enclosures - all Executive or Associate members of PICMG and participants in the 3.0 technical subcommittee. Motorola Computer Group hosted this event and contributed the necessary facilities, power, and test equipment.

"The compatibility results were very good, with little or no conflict between vendors' products," said Jeff Munch, the chair of the PICMG 3.0 subcommittee. "This is good news for AdvancedTCA users and for the success of the AdvancedTCA family of specifications."

The AdvancedTCA specifications for next-generation telecommunications equipment are aimed at further expanding the market for off-the-shelf, modular solutions for carrier grade communications equipment, a move that was begun by the highly successful CompactPCI® specifications (PICMG 2.x series).

PICMG also expects to see interest in AdvancedTCA from other industries, such as data communications and military equipment manufacturers. Additional specifications in the series include PICMG 3.1 for Ethernet fabric, PICMG 3.2 for InfiniBand®, and PICMG 3.3 for StarFabric Interconnect.

Founded in 1994, PICMG is a consortium of over 600 companies that 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.

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