TQ presents the COM Express MinimoduleTQMxE38M

12th November 2014
Jacqueline Regnier

Equipped with the latest Intel Atom E3800 (Bay Trail) family and up to 8 GB DDR3L memory with ECC support, the exceptionally compact CPU module TQMxE38M is perfectly designed and built for use in demanding applications. Six different CPU versions – all specific for the extended temperature range – allow optimal scalability in terms of capacity and power consumption. The robust design and the optional paint finish make this module exceptionally reliable.

With its new Intel Atom-based module TQMxE38M, the embedded technology specialist TQ relies on the COM Express Mini form factor, which is established on the market. Unlike other form factors such as Qseven and SMARC, the robust plug connector has a closed and shielded design which ensures a reliable connection to the mainboard. The module's compact size of only 84mm x 55mm allows it to be integrated in applications with very small dimensions. In order to permit installation even in particularly flat devices, TQ also offers extremely flat heat spreaders, in addition to the cooling solutions defined in the standard which allows the height profile to be reduced considerably.

The modern UEFI implementation with numerous innovative performance characteristics scores particularly high in touchscreen applications with highly integrated networked systems. Even the BIOS setup with its graphical interface is already optimized for touchscreen operation. In addition, users can access the system via the network during the boot phase already, which makes it possible to conveniently manage the embedded systems even without special features by chip manufacturers. Additional interfaces provided for service purposes only are therefore becoming superfluous. The application-specific creation and programming of default settings and the exchange of boot logos can easily be achieved by using the tools provided free of charge by TQ. Even different configuration settings can be recorded and managed within a uniform UEFI/BIOS image.

As to graphic interfaces, the new embedded board TQMxE38M relies on forward-looking interfaces such as embedded DisplayPort which, although it is defined in the standard, has not yet been implemented by many due to the necessary backward compatibility in existing projects. The COM Express module thus allows the user to explore all possible ways of implementing the connection of internal displays - up to a resolution of 2560 x 1600 - which is ideal for his/her application, under optimized EMC conditions. The DDI interface with support for DisplayPort, DVI and HDMI is available for connecting to external displays.

To ensure that the user benefits as much as possible from the interfaces provided at the module's plug-in connector, all interfaces are designed with no restrictions in terms of transmission rates and conformity. For example, interfaces such as COM and I2C which are defined in the COM Express standard are implemented via a TQ board controller. As a result, vulnerabilities are prevented, for instance, when using the processor's built-in serial interfaces which presents limitations in baud rate and in the handshake and which requires additional drivers for each operating system. TQ's proprietary board controller furthermore offers numerous other features, such as Watchdog and convenient GPIO control. In addition, a wide range of customized, additional functions can be implemented which allows the user for example to achieve optimal synchronization between the IEEE1588 functionality of the network controller and the baseboard with integrated application logic.

The module is equipped with a TPM component which enables it to meet important requirements for the implementation of security applications. The TQMxE38M is therefore also ideal for use with Intel's Moon Island software platform: based on Wind River Linux with IDP 2.0 and McAfee security expansions, it provides a ready-made BSP not just for secure gateway applications.

A high-precision, temperature-compensated real-time clock is available as an option on the TQMxE38M to accurately synchronize clock settings at all times even in systems not connected to a synchronization network. When turned off, power consumption is very low and a gold cap buffering provides sufficient energy. This allows systems to be implemented even without a lithium battery to supply the real-time clock with energy.

TQ at electronica: Munich, November 11 - 14, 2014, Hall A6, Stand 307

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