Boards/Backplanes

Directly-solderable module provides performance at low cost

3rd March 2015
Barney Scott

TQ has developed the TQMa335L, a small Minimodule with high processing power which can be directly soldered to the base board. Based on the TI's AM335x processor, the ARM Cortex-A8 module is suitable for device developments where high quality is required at low cost, and is based on LGA technology, whereby connections are placed on the PCB in the form of a chessboard style grid of interfaces.

The use of LGA (Land Grid Array) technology allows the module to be soldered to the motherboard cheaply, without requiring a plug-in connector, using a qualified welding process.

With dimensions of 38x38x5mm, the TQMa335xL suits space-constrained applications and offers user-accessible signalling and functions.

With a total of 209 pins, two CAN 2.0 ports provide communication, in addition to two Gigabit Ethernet sockets, a USB host/USB-OTG controller and up to six UARTs. Other functional units can be connected via SDIO, SPI, I2C and McASP. Up to eight 12 bit ADCs round off the possible areas of application.

All available CPU versions from the AM3352 to the AM3359 can be used for the TQMa335xL, offering processing power and functionality options. This provides the user with a processor module which is optimised in price and performance, suitable for a diverse range of applications. The processing power can be scaled from 300 to 1000MHz.

With the graphics controller in the AM335x and the optimum 3D graphics support, display applications can achieve a resolution of up to WXGA (1366x768). Thanks to these features, demanding and innovative operating concepts can be implemented at a reasonable price.

RAM with up to 512MB DDR3L and up to 16GB eMMC Flash has been implemented for programmes and data. Both TI modules from TQ, the TQMa355xL and the TQMa335x, are software-compatible. This allows BSPs such as Linux, QNX and WIN EC2013, as well as IEC61850 (smart grid communication stack) to be used.

With this industrial-standard design, TQ has expanded its product range to include an extra ARM Cortex-A8 module, which TW says balances price and performance.

“TI is excited that TQ has created an embedded module for our Sitara AM335x family of processors,” said Rogerio Almeida, Marketing Manager, Texas Instruments. “The TQMa335xL module is optimised for high volumes in terms of technology and costs. The L version can be directly soldered onto the baseboard, making it more cost effective with a smaller footprint. Based on our collaboration with TQ, other joint projects will follow to support future architectures.”

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