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Industrial PC comes with scalable ETXexpress/COM Express

Posted: 21 Apr 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:V-Box-Express? industrial PC? Kontron? Henri Arnold?

With the box PC V-Box-Express, Kontron expands its range of industrial PCs, designed especially for rugged use in close proximity to machinery. The V-Box-Express is optimally equipped for every task in measurement, controls, operation, and visualization. EtherCAT provides a powerful real-time communication system. With dimensions of 270-by-195-by-232mm, the compact box PC is used primarily where little space is available, such as in enclosures, consoles or directly on machines. The high electromagnetic compatibility and the resistance to shock and vibration make the system suitable for use in robust environments such as the control of printing machines or in sensitive areas like medical technology. Reliable continuous operation is guaranteed up to an ambient temperature of 55C.

The industrial power supply covers brief voltage drops with 24Vdc, thus guaranteeing long-life and secure operation even in 24hr continuous operation and under extreme system loads. Alternatively, power can also be supplied via 230V or an external power supply. The scalable Kontron ETXexpress module offers the highest performance, currently up to Intel Pentium 2GHz, and is ready for Intel Core Duo processor technology (available in Q3/2006). These dual-core processors allow critical and highly complex real-time applications to run on one computer at almost twice the performance.

The Kontron V-Box-Express has four RS232 and four USB interfaces, VGA and DVI graphics, and Ethernet 10/100 and Ethernet 100/1000; two free PCI slots and two PCI Express x1 slots are available for expansion. In addition, interface expansions are possible anytime via a customer-specific baseboard. Depending on requirements, the system can be equipped with one or two shock- and vibration-resistant hard drives and two CompactFlash disks or two Express cards. EtherCAT is currently used for real-time communication between the process and field levels; the software configuration is preinstalled on a flash disk and can be integrated into the system via plug-and-play. To date, it is the only Industrial Ethernet solution whose master does not require a special hardware interface; rather it is lead out via the LAN interface.

- Henri Arnold
Electronics Express Europe

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