MicroTCA carrier hubs upgraded to support MTCA.4 specification

February 14, 2013 // By Nick Flaherty
Kontron has upgraded its MicroTCA Carrier Hubs (MCH) to support the latest MTCA.4 specification for high performance computing.

With the MicroTCA enhancements for rear I/O and precision timing, the AM4904 and AM4910 MCHs have been upgraded for the requirements of high-speed data acquisition and processing applications. Target segments include physical research centers and many other high-bandwidth applications that require increased serviceability packed into a compact form factor and feature high levels of performance, bandwidth and availability. By supporting four different high-speed fabric variants, including GbE, sRIO, PCIe and 10 GbE, the Carrier Hubs build the backbone of practically all data-intensive MicroTCA-based high-performance applications.
Besides deployment in physics applications, other typical scenarios can be found in telecom markets - including 3G, LTE and network test equipment - and non-telecom markets such as military, medical, test and measurement, as well as in image and video processing applications. To cover the individual application requirements, the modular MCHs come in four different versions. The AM4904-BASE is a pure Gigabit Ethernet switching version; the AM4904-PCIE has a combined PCIe mezzanine card and the AM4904-SRIO features sRIO. For high bandwidth demands, the AM4910 provides 10 Gigabit Ethernet switching. All the versions provide central management and data switching functionality on a full-size, single-width Advanced Mezzanine Card (AMC) form factor.
Equipped with a 600MHz PowerPC 405EX processor for MCMC functionality and switching management, the MCHs enable highly efficient, redundant system architectures with up to 12 AMCs, two cooling units and four power units. To provide support for various telco clocks, the MCHs feature a sophisticated clock implementation and a PCI Express Fabric Clocking distribution. They also include high-performance features such as wire speed, Enterprise-Class Ethernet switch with Layer 2 switching and Multi-Cast support including full 4K VLANs and Link Aggregation, Quality-of-Service support (QoS). Additionally, a packet classification engine for flexible Access Control Lists is featured. A full set of standard management interfaces including a user-friendly CLI, SNMP, IPMI and web access enable the easy initialization and control of the MCH's switching and management functionality. External systems