EMJ PC/104 system used on space shuttle

Engineers at Crosslink in Boulder, Colo., needed an embedded PC/104 single-board computer for a communications system aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery.

Aug 1st, 1998

Engineers at Crosslink in Boulder, Colo., needed an embedded PC/104 single-board computer for a communications system aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery.

So they chose the PC/104-based embedded system from EMJ Embedded Systems in Apex, N.C.

Crosslink engineers are under contract to Spacehab Inc. of Vienna, Va., to integrate the data gathering, processing, and transmission hardware and software in Spacehab`s Universal Communications System - better known as SHUCS.

The EMJ system uses a PC/104 586 133 MHz single-board computer from JUMPtec in Deggendof, Germany; a Versinet Ethernet board, PC/104 enclosure, and fan card from Parvus Corp. in Salt Lake City; and an IDE Flash card from M-Systems in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Due to a tight budget, SHUCS designers needed a low-cost, robust, off-the-shelf PC/104 single-board computer, says Mike Lounge, vice president of flight systems development at Spacehab. Using those parameters, Crosslink chose EMJ, Lounge says.

SHUCS made its first flight in June aboard Discovery. The system is designed to establish real-time voice and data transmission between Earth and orbiting space stations. It includes a cellular phone-like internal terminal and external satellite antenna.

SHUCS provides Internet and COMSAT mobile links between ground-based users and orbiting payloads or astronauts via the commercial Inmarsat satellite and ground stations. SHUCS can accommodate file transfers, up/downlink fax, and voice communication. - J.M.

For more information on EMJ Embedded Systems, contact Mark Estill by phone at 919-363-4441, by mail at EMJ Embedded Systems, 1434 Farrington, Road, Apex, N.C. 27502, by e-mail at marke@emji.net, or on the World Wide Web at http://www.emj.com.

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