A VPX chassis is an enclosure that houses and protects electronic components, modules or systems. A VPX electrical chassis provides the physical structure to support and organize electronic devices and facilitates their interconnection, typically with a series of backplanes.
VPX chassis are commonly used in military applications that require high-performance computing and data processing, such as radar systems, electronic warfare, communications and image processing, where reliability, scalability and performance are critical.
The term VPX refers to a modular, high performance electronics chassis/packaging standard designed for rugged operating environments. VPX defines the common architecture standards for the electrical and mechanical characteristics of the chassis, and is used extensively across military and aerospace applications. OpenVPX builds on the VPX standard, with guidelines for enhanced interoperability at the system level, promoting compatibility and interchangeability between vendors.
A typical VPX chassis features high-speed VPX backplanes that support various protocols including PCI Express, Serial RapidIO and 10 Gigabit ethernet, which enable high-speed communications between processing and I/O modules. This high-speed data transfer makes VPX an ideal choice for demanding applications such as military signal processing and data acquisition.
Rugged VPX chassis are designed to be modular, allowing for simple integration of multiple processing and I/O modules. The modular nature of the VPX chassis ensures flexibility to custom-develop a system well-suited to the intended application, and facilitates easy system upgrades as requirements change or technology upgrades become available.
Ruggedized VPX Chassis for Military Applications
The rugged nature of VPX chassis ensures suitability within the harsh operating conditions often experienced within military, defense and aerospace applications – in particular military vehicles and aircraft. VPX chassis are designed to withstand extremes of temperature, shock and vibration, with high ingress protection against moisture and sand/dust.
VPX Chassis Form Factors
Most VPX chassis manufacturers offer equipment in a variety of form factors, ranging from 3U VPX rugged chassis (a three-slot chassis) to 6U VPX chassis (a six-slot chassis), to cater for different electronic module capacity requirements.
Cooling for VPX Chassis
VPX chassis typically incorporate a range of advanced cooling solutions, including conduction cooling, due to the high temperatures that may be generated and/or experienced by the electronics, ensuring effective thermal management to prevent overheating.