Embedded CPU adds data acquisition in smaller, more rugged format

Diamond Systems Corp., a leading supplier of embeddable computer and I/O boards, announced the availability of its Athena high-performance embedded CPU with data acquisition features in a footprint measuring less than 4.2 x 4.5 in.


Diamond Systems Corp.’s Athena embedded CPU comes in two processor configurations: 400 MHz fanless or 660 MHz fan-cooled, each with 128 MB RAM. The board dissipates only 10 W of power and operates over an extended temperature range of -40 to 85 °C.

Diamond Systems Corp ., a leading supplier of embeddable computer and I/O boards, announced the availability of its Athena high-performance embedded CPU with data acquisition features in a footprint measuring less than 4.2 x 4.5 in. Athena uses the VIA Eden processor family to deliver Pentium-III performance in a low-power embedded CPU for demanding military, aerospace, and mobile embedded-computing applications.

Athena includes on-board memory, Ethernet, video, audio, and data acquisition to form a complete, rugged industrial CPU. All features are soldered on board for maximum immunity to shock and vibration, says the manufacturer. As an added option for ruggedness, configuration jumpers can be replaced with "zero-ohm shunts." The built-in data acquisition circuit offers high-accuracy, stable 16-bit A/D performance with 100 kHz sample rate, wide input capability, and programmable input ranges. It includes four 12-bit D/A channels, 24 programmable digital I/O lines, and two programmable counter/timers.

The CPU’s analog circuitry is located away from the high-speed digital logic to ensure low-noise performance for critical applications. Besides full-featured data acquisition with analog and digital I/O points, both processor versions of Athena CPU (see photo caption) include four RS-232 ports, four USB ports, LCD and CRT video, 10/100 Mbps Ethernet, IDE port for hard disk or board-mountable solid-state IDE flash disk module, watchdog timer, and PC/104 expansion bus.

Free driver software and technical support are provided for Linux, RT Linux, Microsoft Windows 2000/XP and CE, QNX, DOS, and VxWorks operating systems. Pricing for the 400-MHz processor version is $825 and $925 for the 660-MHz version—in quantity 1-9. Volume discounts apply for 10 or more units.

—Frank J. Bartos, executive editor, Control Engineering, fbartos@reedbusiness.com

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