White Papers

Fabric40: An Introduction

February 19, 2014 | BY: Steve Edwards

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This white paper is the first in a series about the benefits of using the latest 40 Gbps interconnects for use in Defense and Aerospace rugged deployed COTS systems. This series of white papers will describe aspects of designing with 40 Gbps interconnects, such as 40 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) and QDR InfiniBand. This series will also discuss Curtiss-Wright's end-to-end family of 40 Gbps fabric-enabled products, organized under the Fabric40 family, the latest addition to our FabricX Initiative, designed for use in ISR applications.

The Curtiss-Wright FabricX Initiative

Curtiss-Wright's FabricX Initiative defines a set of interoperable modules, each utilizing the same data plane fabric, that are supported with a comprehensive suite of software tools, middleware, math libraries, and operating systems.

FabricX-based ISR systems are scaled to ensure that the full sensor processor chain, from signal acquisition to processing, and all of the system's actionable results, benefit from seamless end-to-end integration. The FabricX approach significantly minimizes the system developer's program risk, development schedule, and costs.

Our first Fabric10 products became available in 2007 with the introduction of the VPX6-185 single board computer (SBC) and the CHAMP-AV6 DSP Engine. Both of these products support a Serial RapidIO (SRIO) Gen1 data plane fabric. As a follow-up, our first Fabric20, with support for SRIO Gen2, was introduced in 2010. In 2013, Curtiss-Wright introduced Fabric40, the latest addition to the FabricX family, with our third generation of VPX/OpenVPX products that feature support for either a 40 Gigabit Ethernet or QDR InfiniBand data plane. The Fabric40 family of products currently includes Intel-based SBC and multiprocessing products, Xilinx FPGA-based products, a 40 Gbps Ethernet/QDR InifiniBand OpenVPX Data/Control Plane switch, and a series of 10 Gbaud Gen3 OpenVPX backplanes.

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Author’s Biography

Steve Edwards

Director, Secure Embedded Solutions & Technical Fellow

Steve has over 25 years of experience in the embedded system industry. He managed and co-designed Curtiss-Wright’s first rugged multiprocessor and FPGA products and was involved in the architecture, management and evangelization of the industry’s first VPX products. Steve has Chaired the VITA 65 working group and currently leads Defense Solutions’ strategic initiative in Anti-Tamper and Cybersecurity. Steve has a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Rutgers University.

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