Andrew McCoubrey, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions
As we start a new year, it is customary to look ahead at emerging technologies, both evolutionary and revolutionary. But as the calendar changes, it is also a time to reflect on the past and where we are today. Although recent years have produced few entirely new platforms designed from the ground up, our industry continues to deliver higher levels of performance and new capabilities within existing systems.
Today's embedded systems often include several counters and clocks that keep track of time, and ensuring that they are accurate - and synchronized across multiple devices - can be critical. For example, synchronized clocks can be used to partition shared resources (such as network links) in distributed systems with critical real-time requirements.
Designers of next-generation high-performance embedded computing (HPEC) solutions for demanding intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) systems applications got a boost from the introduction of Intel's multicore Xeon D system-on-chip (SoC) processor earlier in 2016. This device provides as many as 16 cores in the same power footprint as earlier four-core devices and features the rugged ball-grid-array (BGA) packages and extended temperature range needed for deployed applications.