N.A.T. Announces New MicroTCA.4.1 Low Level Radio Frequency (LLRF) Backplane for High Energy Physics Research and Telecom Applications



N.A.T., a leading supplier of embedded boards and systems based on open standards, today announced a new MicroTCA.4.1 low level radio frequency (LLRF) backplane for the distribution of high precision RF and clock signals in embedded computing systems aimed at high energy physics research and other applications: the NAT-LLRF-Backplane.

Originally developed by DESY, the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron, and now licensed by N.A.T., the NAT-LLRF-Backplane provides three extra slots for RF/clock signal generation and distribution modules. It provides high-frequency signal distribution in the range of DC to 6GHz (27 single-ended channels, star topology) and low-jitter CLK channels (22 differential pairs, star topology). The backplane supports two RTM power modules, such as the NAT-RPM-PSC, and delivers a high-performance and managed power source for up to 12 MicroRTMs (μRTM) and three extended RTMs (eRTM). For cost-efficiency, the unit can also operate with no RTM-PM if the rear of the chassis only needs a limited amount of power.

The NAT-LLRF-Backplane also provides low noise separated analog bipolar power distribution (+VV, -VV) for μRTMs and unipolar power distribution (PP) for eRTMs. The NAT-MCH-RTM-BM-FPGA module provides system management functionality and the backplane provides three LVDS data communication links per slot to eRTMs. An on-board user I²C interface can be used for system management and communication among other functions.

The NAT-LLRF-Backplane can be mounted in a 9U chassis, such as the NATIVE-R9, and it includes a dedicated shielding board which protects against electromagnetic interference induced by the AMC backplane. The backplane ground can be connected to/isolated from the chassis ground using screws. N.A.T. and the DESY research institute have studied the signal integrity of the design and optimized it to achieve best performance.

About MicroTCA.4.1
The MTCA.4.1 hardware extensions specification introduces an additional rear backplane to support both precision analog and digital functions. The backplane supports ancillary Rear Power Modules that can deliver positive and negative analog power as well as standard power to µRTMs or full height eRTMS (extended RTMs). The additional backplane, side space and rear power makes possible a new family of applications, stimulated by the need for compact multi-GHz Low Level RF systems for high density superconducting accelerator applications.

About N.A.T.
Founded in 1990 with the aim of developing high-performance network interfaces for industrial computers, N.A.T is a privately owned and financed company with headquarters in Bonn, Germany and certified distributors and sales agents worldwide. The company has developed substantial knowledge in networking technologies across a wide range of open, standards-based architectures including VMEbus, CompactPCI, PCI, PCIexpress, PMC, Industry Pack Modules, and M-Modules. N.A.T. was at the forefront when the AdvancedTCA, MicroTCA and AMC standards were introduced and is today one of the leading suppliers for board and system level products based on AMC and MicroTCA. The product portfolio includes line interfaces, network processors, single- and multicore data engines, management and system controllers, 19″ rack mountable chassis, power supplies and of course the communication protocols and middle-ware to build turn-key and application-ready systems. For more information, please visit www.nateurope.com.

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