Aerospace/Military/Defence Product of the Year
Product Name: LightCONEX® – Optical Interconnects for OpenVPX and SOSA-aligned Applications
Company: Smiths Interconnect
Smiths Interconnect’s new LightCONEX® optical plug-in and backplane module connectors are compatible with the VITA 66.5 draft standard and aligned with the SOSA™ Technical Standard for VPX systems within rugged embedded computing applications and sensor systems.
The Sensor Open Systems Architecture (SOSA™) Consortium is developing a common framework for transitioning sensor systems to an open systems architecture, based on key interfaces and open standards established by industry-government consensus. Smiths Interconnect has been a leader in the VITA 66.5 standard development under OpenVPX and is an active member of the SOSA™ consortium, which references the VITA 66.5 draft standard.
Building on the recognized reliability and robustness of the optical modules of Smiths Interconnect’s Reflex Photonics® technology, LightCONEX active blind-mate optical interconnect system is a revolutionary solution that will enable the next generation of OpenVPX systems.
LightCONEX® integrates the optical transceiver into the backplane connector, freeing up board space on the plug-in card for more processing capability and other functions. By moving the transceiver to the backplane, it eliminates the need for a mid-board-to-backplane cable, its assembly step and potential for rework. Lastly, use of LightCONEX can enable up to 1.4 Tbps full-duplex in a VITA full-width for maximum volumetric data density. The optical interconnect meets military standard requirements for shock, vibration, and harsh environmental conditions.
The LightCONEX family of optical interconnects is the answer to the stringent size, weight and power (SWaP) requirements of today’s SOSA-aligned Defence applications. It offers flexibility, light weight, very high bandwidth, and forward compatibility with developing standards, while addressing the challenges of high bandwidth port density and volumetric density on the plug-in card.
The LightCONEX blind-mate optical interconnect system includes a fixed plug-in connector and a floating backplane connector compatible with the VITA 66.5 standard. The low-profile plug-in transceiver connector is screw-mounted on the board edge through an electrical interposer, saving board space and eliminating fibre cable handling. The backplane connector has a spring-loaded MT to ensure a secure MT to MT mating connection under extreme shock and vibration conditions.
LightCONEX VPX optical interconnects offer the following differentiating benefits:
Increased volumetric density by incorporating 10G or 25G edge-mounted transceivers into the plug-in interconnect
Port bandwidth density of up to 700 Gbps full-duplex in a half-width aperture
Easy VPX board assembly and rework by eliminating fibre pigtail on edge-mount transceiver
Rugged interconnects capable of 500 mating cycles and qualified to MIL-STD-1344A for shock and vibration