Curtiss-Wright Controls announces another VPX win

Officials at Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing won their second military design-in of their VPX products for a U.S. Army’s Future Combat Systems (FCS) program application.

By John McHale

CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Officials at Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing won their second military design-in of their VPX products for a U.S. Army’s Future Combat Systems (FCS) program application.

Curtiss-Wright will supply computer processor modules to General Dynamics C4 Systems in Phoenix, and Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for the integrated computer system (ICS) of FCS.

VPX, a VITA standard also known as VITA 46, promises near-supercomputer performance in small embedded form factors. VPX is available in 6U as well as 3U formats, which is causing excitement among designers of intensive signal-processing applications.

A Venture Development Corp. (VDC) market report given at the Critical Embedded Systems Mediafest in Scottsdale, Ariz., stated that the market for VPX was taking off slower than at first thought but that eventually it will accelerate and be profitable.

The VPX market for Curtiss-Wright is performing well right now, says Ivan Straznicky during a Military & Aerospace Electronics Webcast titled “Ruggedizing Embedded Systems.” During the Webcast, Straznicky discussed the ruggedness of VPX and its companion VITA standard VPX REDI, which covers cooling aspects of VPX systems. Interested readers may register for the Webcast at http://mae.pennnet.com/webcast/display_webcast.cfm?id=653.

Curtiss-Wright officials would not comment publicly on the FCS contract beyond what was in their press release.

The FCS integrated computer system combines a wide range of previously independent computing applications into an integrated, secure processing environment. ICS is a common computing environment for 13 of the 14 platforms in the FCS family of systems which comprises a network of sensors, unmanned aerial platforms, and manned and unmanned ground systems.

Under terms of the contract, Curtiss-Wright will supply the processing modules to General Dynamics and Rockwell Collins for integration into the ICS system. The initial order is for more than 1,000 modules with deliveries scheduled to begin during the second quarter of 2008.

Curtiss-Wright’s first VPX win was for radar processing subsystems for use in the U.S. Marine Corps’ Ground/Air Task Oriented Radar (G/ATOR) Program. Under the contract Curtiss-Wright will supply Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems in Baltimore with a rugged air-flow-through radar processing subsystem. For more information, visit www.cwcembedded.com.

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