Embedded System Module

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Embedded System Module, or ESM, is a compact computer-on-module (COM) standard. An ESM module typically includes a CPU processor, memory, module-specific I/O interfaces and a number of basic front I/O connectors. They can be plugged on a carrier board or be used as a stand-alone processor card.

If the ESM module is plugged on a carrier, it relies on the standard PCI bus as a board-to-board interface. In this case two connectors create a link to the carrier. While the "J1" connector provides a specified PCI connection, the "J2" connector brings I/O signals from the ESM module to the carrier, which then includes all necessary connectors. The signal assignment of J2 is not fixed but can be completely customized, although there are reserved pins for a 64-bit PCI bus interface. A third connector, "J3", is used for additional I/O signals if the ESM module has no front I/O. The signal assignment of this connector is fixed to support a special set of I/O functions.

A large part of the I/O functions on ESMs are often controlled by an onboard FPGA component (field-programmable gate array) so that every module can easily be tailored to a specialized application through user-defined functions. Such functions are loaded into the FPGA as IP cores. Using FPGAs also reduces dependence on special controller chips which may become obsolete, thus extending the card's availability.

ESMs are typically used on boards for CompactPCI and VMEbus as well as single-board computers for embedded applications. A company standard by MEN Micro, a manufacturer of embedded computers, specifies the ESM concept and the different types of modules. The ESM specification defines one form factor for the printed circuit board: 149 × 71 mm (5.9 × 2.8 in).

Depending on the processor type, most ESM modules have heat sinks and can be operated in wide temperature ranges up to -40 to +85 °C.

A mechanical specialty of ESM modules is that their connectors are compatible with the PCI-104 module standard. These modules can be "stacked" onto ESM modules, e. g., for additional peripheral interfaces.

Relative products[edit]

Name Manufacturer CPU Frequency Memory Flash Size Working Temp Signals Routed to Pins operating system
MYC-C7Z010/20 CPU Module MYIR ARM Cortex-A9 Xilinx XC7Z010/20 processors 667MHz 1GB DDR3 SDRAM 4GB eMMC, 32MB QSPI Flash 75 x 55mm 0~70 Celsius (commercial grade) or -40~85 Celsius (industrial grade) Gigabit Ethernet,USB OTG,Serial ports,I2C,CAN and SPI Linux
MYC-C437X CPU Module MYIR ARM Cortex-A9 TI AM437x processors Up to 1GHz 512MB DDR3 SDRAM 4GB eMMC Flash, 32KB EEPROM 60 x 45mm 0~70 Celsius (commercial grade) or -40~85 Celsius (industrial grade) USB,Serial ports, I2C,CAN,SPI,ADC and SDIO Linux
MYC-IMX28X CPU Module MYIR Freescale I.MX28 Series ARM926EJ-S Processors 454MHz 128MB DDR2 SDRAM 256MB Nand Flash, 128KB SPI Flash 62 x 38mm -40~85 Celsius (industrial grade) Ethernet,USB,Serial ports,I2C,SPI,ADC,PWM and SDIO Linux
MYC-JA5D4X CPU Module MYIR Atmel SAMA5D42/44 ARM Cortex-A5 Processorss 600MHz 512MB DDR2 SDRAM 512MB Nand Flash, 4MB Data Flash, 64KB EEPROM 67.60 x 45.00mm -40~85 Celsius (industrial grade) Ethernet,TWI,SPI,SMD,SDIO,etc Linux

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