Transportation computer family delivers design flexibility

11th June 2014
Source: Kontron AG
Posted By : Staff Reporter
Transportation computer family delivers design flexibility

Designed specifically for the transportation market, the TRACe family of operational computers has been launched by Kontron. The two platforms introduced, the TRACe B304-TR and TRACe V304-TR, deliver proven, rugged and feature-rich building blocks that allow design flexibility. 

The first platform in the Kontron family is the TRACe B304-TR, which is an EN50155-certified fanless transportation computer designed to make customization extremely easy to meet application-specific requirements. The TRACe family benefits from the inherent flexibility advantages of Kontron’s COM Express Computer-on-Module (COM) that features the Intel Atom E3845 processor with up to quad core 1.91 GHz performance. Its rugged design ensures stable operation in harsh environments and is ideal for any rolling stock application such as passenger information systems, video streaming and storage servers, security surveillance and train management systems.

The Kontron TRACe product line features high performance density and low power consumption in a small footprint, low profile design that offers integrators higher flexibility in terms of the number of available I/O. The family also provides long-term support by design based on its modularity and seamless technology insertion of the processor, storage, I/O and power supply unit. These innovative TRACe capabilities allow transportation OEMs to significantly decrease development efforts for faster time-to-market, while also reducing maintenance costs and the total cost of ownership.

The second member of the family is the Kontron TRACe V304-TR, which is an EN50155-certified and tested fanless Network Video Recorder (NVR) that can record and transmit H.264 video streams making it ideally suited for rolling stock IP video surveillance. This advanced platform provides outstanding storage capabilities with an included internal fixed 2.5-inch 256 gigabyte (GB) SSD, one SATA disk holder with tray for an extractible second 2.5-inch HDD (not included) to accommodate higher-volume bulk data easing maintenance and use. The Kontron V304-TR uses a proven COM Express COMs module featuring the Intel Atom E3845 processor with quad core 1.91 GHz performance to deliver the high performance, high reliability and high-capacity data storage needed for rough railway environments.

All Kontron’s TRACe transportation computing platforms integrate advanced health management tools, an intelligent Power-on Built-in Test (PBIT) solution, which provides a modular and scalable set of uniform test routines to assess the health status and configuration of the complete system. This enables operators to permanently, continuously and independently monitor and report the status of the application thanks to dedicated health management resources in the computer independent from the main CPU. The result is enhanced security along with improved diagnostics and maintenance that, in turn, minimize the need for system debugging. For example, the TRACe is ideally suited for fleet management of a large number of units in the field. Its health management tools enable operators to monitor the entire fleet to better manage and anticipate maintenance, reduce turn-around times and increase the overall availability of the units.

“The dependency on electronics has grown with each generation of embedded transportation system. With our extensive and proven history of successful embedded computing deployments, Kontron understands the need to provide technology that enables continued advancements, expansion and long-term value,” explained Robert Negre, Transportation Business Line Manager. “That is why we designed the Kontron TRACe to specifically provide transportation system designers with a highly flexible COTS-based solution that efficiently combines standard and custom elements. Our innovative features offer a streamlined solution that brings railway-specific functionalities and design value to the core to dramatically reduce OEM time-to-market and meet cost of ownership goals.”

The product roadmap for Kontron’s TRACe family is forecasted to expand with additional platforms featuring a train control and management system configuration that provides direct access to a multi-vehicle bus (MVB) interface on the front plate. Based on the international IEC 61375 Train Communication Network (TCN) standard, Kontron’s future TRACe platforms will enable equipment using an MVB to be directly managed and monitored. A future“gateway” version that delivers high Wi-Fi connectivity for passenger infotainment applications as well as support for alternative vehicle buses such as Profibus and CAN/CANOpen are also planned as part of the TRACe family portfolio. In addition, Kontron intends to roll out a modular, ruggedized in-vehicle solution in accordance with the in-vehicle 8VDC to 36VDC voltage range.

The first samples of the Kontron TRACe family will be available in July 2014 and can be ordered now.

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