Advanced Telecom Computing Architecture (AdvancedTCA) and Micro Telecom Computing Architecture (MicroTCA) are standards developed by the PCI Industrial Manufacturer Group (PICMG) for carrier-grade telecommunication systems. These standards allow the use of multiple processors and high-bandwidth network technologies in a highly dense and bladed system. The TCA technology provides support for high-speed switch fabrics (up to 2.5 Tbps), high availability (99.999%), high power budget (up to 200w), multi-protocol support and advanced platform management for the telecommunication modules. AMC is a mezzanine standard that defines how modules such as Digital Signal Processors and Network Processors are connected to and managed by AdvancedTCA, MicroTCA and other carrier-grade communication platforms.
The Polaris tester tools have been of immense use to Advantech for the test and validation of our new xTCA hardware designs and firmware releases. Right now we're thoroughly using all three testers: The ATCA Tester is an automated test suite for testing the management software in ATCA-based building blocks or systems and has been validated by the CP-TA as an authorized test tool. We make extensive use of it on our Intel® Xeon® -based node blades as well as in validating our switch blades. On the MicroTCA and AMC tester side, we have instituted the Polaris packages for testing the Module Management Controllers (MMC) of all of our AMCs, and in particular for the carrier managers on our MCH's. As well as using them for Design Quality Assurance (DQA) during firmware development and upgrade phases we rely on them for qualification in the final QA processes. The time and effort this has saved us is immeasurable.
From a market perspective it's encouraging to note that the frequency of OEM customer requests for copies of Polaris Tester result-logs has been on the rise. That's good news for the whole ecosystem as it endorses the efforts which CP-TA and Polaris have invested in bringing a reliable self-certification product to market.
Telecom Sector Marketing Director, Advantech