In June there was a noticeable warp in the intelligent systems time/space continuum as Intel announced its 4th generation Intel® Core™ processor family based on the Haswell microarchitecture (oops, I may have been watching too much “Big Bang Theory” lately!). Many of the hardware members of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance jumped out with news releases detailing new products, or plans to announce products, in support of the Intel news. Most were pre-announcing products that will have more details announced as they reach production release dates this fall.

The driving force behind the wave of news releases was the promise of significant improvements in performance and power of the new processors, enabling new use cases and applications in the embedded industry. Intel has been working closely, behind the scenes, with suppliers of hardware and software to the embedded computing industry to speed the rapid adoption of technologies empowering the OEM community with embedded boards and systems.

The 4th generation Intel Core processors support significant architectural enhancements aimed at high-performance embedded applications. Improvements within the 4th generation Intel Core processor include increased raw processing performance per watt, hardware-based memory encryption with Intel® AES New Instructions (Intel® AES-NI), and increased floating-point and integer performance utilizing Intel® Advanced Vector Extensions 2.0 (Intel® AVX 2.0). The graphics processing unit (GPU) has also been enhanced, adding additional execution units for upgraded 3D / media graphics and up to a 24% increase in raw performance. The 4th generation Intel Core processors also support OpenCL 1.2, enabling them to perform as general-purpose graphics processing units (GPGPUs). There are significant maintenance and diagnostics advantages achieved through utilizing the remote configuration and management feature, Intel® Active Management Technology 9.0 (Intel® AMT 9.0), continues these advantages.

The enhancements in CPU performance and graphics capabilities, as well as security and power efficiency in the 4th generation Intel Core processor family boost signal- and image-processing performance and strengthen security for military/aerospace and other high-end critical embedded solutions.

Let’s take a look at what new products are in the pipeline from the Intel Intelligent Systems Alliance members that also have a focus on the military and aerospace markets. These members are especially excited to be offering products that help to squelch their nemesis, the Size, Weight and Power (SWaP) ratio, that drives so many of their customers computer architecture decisions. Be sure to check out the table at the end for a complete summary of the new products.


ADLINK Technology, Inc. announced availability of its initial offerings on the 4th generation Intel Core processor with Intel 8-series chipsets. The first products featuring the new generation processor are the Express-HL and Express-HL2 (COM Express*), NuPRO-E42 (PICMG 1.3), cPCI-3510 (CompactPCI*), and Matrix MXE-5400, enabling enhanced embedded applications in medical, defense, transportation, and industrial automation.

“The 4th generation Intel Core processor-based platform allows ADLINK Technology to deliver up to double the graphics performance over the previous generation,” said Dirk Finstel, EVP of ADLINK’s Global Module Computer Product Segment. “In addition, these new integrated graphics capabilities enable more compact imaging solutions, leading to new form factors and devices with an as-yet-unseen level of visual capabilities.”

Recently, ADLINK rolled out its most advanced COM Express Type 6 module, the ADLINK Express-HL. This new module is well suited for intelligent systems innovations in a variety of market segments, such as retail, medicine, gaming, transportation, defense, communications, and industrial automation.


Advantech announced its latest platforms including Industrial Motherboards, Single Board Computers, Computer On Modules, Industrial Serverboards, CompactPCI Platforms, VPX blades and Network Application Platforms. With improvements in CPU performance, media and graphics capabilities, security and power efficiency, the new platforms are ideal for powering intelligent systems designed for a variety of market segments including video surveillance, digital signage, medical, industrial automation, gaming, network and telecom, etc.

“To capitalize on the true potential of the Internet of Things (IOT), Advantech is committed to developing platforms based on Intel technology at every point in the network. Our product divisions design data acquisition devices and controllers which are deployed across multiple industries capturing vital information. The products we are announcing are all catalysts in the conversion process of massive volumes of data from many different sources into value-added information,” said Franz Wei, Vice President of the Embedded System Group.

Concurrent TechnologiesConcurrent Technologies trb12msd.jpg

Concurrent Technologies announced the TR B12/msd, a 3U VPX board featuring the Intel® Core™ i7-4700EQ processor and the associated mobile Intel® QM87 Express chipset. With up to 16 Gbytes of DRAM and a rich assortment of I/O interfaces, this board is an ideal processor board for 3U VPX solutions requiring the latest in processing performance. 3U VPX is particularly well suited to high-end compute intensive applications in military embedded, aerospace and transportation systems for data acquisition, control systems and video signal processing.

Glen Fawcett, CEO, Concurrent Technologies, commented, "We are delighted to introduce one of the first 4th Generation Intel Core processor-based 3U VPX boards, continuing our policy of supporting the latest Intel processing technology on key embedded architectures. The TR B12/msd is an upgrade to our current products and is suitable as both an upgrade path for existing applications as well as new projects.”

congatec AGconga-TS87_press.jpg

congatec AG announced the availability of the conga-TS87, a Type 6 COM Express module featuring 4th Generation Intel Core processors. The COM Express module offers outstanding performance, featuring improved vector processing, more efficient floating point calculation and amazing graphics without an increase in power consumption.

The conga-TS87 COM Express module with pin out Type 6 takes advantage of integrated graphics and the associated advanced digital display interfaces. The conga-TS87 also utilizes the high bandwidth of USB 3.0 and PCI Express 3.0 with additional PCI Express lanes.

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions introduced its CHAMP-AV9, the industry’s first rugged, high performance OpenVPX* (VITA 65) DSP (digital signal processing) engine based on the latest quad-core Intel® Core™ i7-4700EQ processor. The CHAMP-AV9 is specifically designed to operate in extreme environmental conditions for rugged, deployed applications at the highest possible performance level.  Using the enhanced Intel Advanced Vector Extensions (Intel AVX) 2.0 instruction set, the CHAMP-AV9 offers 614 GFLOPS per board, not including the on-chip GPGPU numerical co-processors, to deliver more than double the performance of previous DSP solutions.  CHAMP-AV9 is also the first OpenVPX DSP engine to utilize a 40 Gigabit per second (Gbps) Ethernet or InfiniBand* data plane fabric, providing 14 GB/sec full duplex throughput with RDMA to support scalable, distributed, real-time computing.

“Curtiss-Wright’s highly-engineered thermal management solutions for Intel processors eliminate throttling at extreme temperatures, yielding greater performance for rugged, deployed applications,” said Lynn Bamford, senior vice president and general manager of Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions. “With the CHAMP-AV9, Curtiss-Wright continues our focus on DSP applications that require maximum performance within size, weight and power constraints.”

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions also introduced the S/DVME-1908, 6U VME64 single board computer. The S/DVME-1908 delivers an unmatched combination of ruggedization, high performance and affordability – ideal for upgrading legacy systems based on older processor technology or contemporary SBCs that require higher levels of ruggedization. This rugged air- or conduction-cooled SBC is designed for high-performance operation in benign to harsh environments and is ideal for upgrading SWaP-C-constrained legacy systems on the most demanding fielded applications from unmanned aerial and ground vehicles, tactical aircraft, and armored vehicles to rugged naval systems.

"Our new S/DVME-1908 breathes new life into legacy systems where a complete redesign is cost prohibitive," said Lynn Bamford, senior vice president and general manager of Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions. “At a price point targeted at technology insertion requirements; our new SBC brings 4th Gen Intel Core i7 processor technology to older systems to replace outdated or lower-ruggedization SBCs with contemporary processing performance. With Intel's ongoing commitment to long life-cycle supply, this advanced low-power processing engine will drive a new generation of higher performance and power efficient compute intensive applications."

Extreme Engineering Solutions, Inc. (X-ES)

Introduced several 3U VPX, 6U VPX, XMC, 3U CompactPCI, 6U CompactPCI, 6U VME, and COM Express Single Board Computers (SBCs). Rob Scidmore, CEO of X-ES, emphasizes X-ES’s commitment to being first to market with a wide selection of 4th generation Intel Core i7 processor-based products, “We are proud to continue our leadership in the industry by providing a full line-up of embedded form factors based on Intel’s latest processor architecture.”

Ben Klam, VP of Engineering at X-ES adds, “We are utilizing our unique understanding of Intel architecture to provide highly reliable 4th generation Intel Core i7 processor-based products that maximize I/O capabilities, operate at extreme low temperatures, and provide industry-leading cooling for unequaled high-temperature performance.”

X-ES’s line up of conduction and air-cooled products based on the 4th generation Intel Core i7 processor include the XCalibur4500 6U CompactPCI, the XCalibur4530 6U VME, and the XCalibur4540 6U VPX modules, which maximize memory capacity and I/O capabilities and add configurability with two PMC/XMC sites.  X-ES provides the XPedite7570 3U VPX and the XPedite7530 3U CompactPCI modules, which are ideal for smaller aerospace and vehicle platforms that require maximum processing performance and I/O capabilities with the flexibility of PMC and XMC support.  For applications with severe size, weight, and power (SWaP) challenges, such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGVs), X-ES also offers the small XPedite7501 XMC and XPedite7550 Rugged COM Express modules. 

GE Intelligent Platforms

GE Intelligent Platforms announced the SBC326 rugged 3U VPX single board computer. Featuring the quad-core 4th generation Intel Core i7 processor, it provides outstanding performance per watt while helping to minimize size, weight and power (SWaP) in deployed subsystems – making it ideal for constrained environments such as manned- and unmanned vehicles.

Concurrently, GE-IP announced that it would make available a broad range of new products based on 4th generation Intel Core i7 processors in a range of architectures and form factors, including rugged 6U VPX, 3U and 6U CompactPCI, and 6U VME single board computers and a dual processor multiprocessor.

“Our customers’ applications are increasing in complexity and in their demand for across-the-board performance – yet they are challenged by new generations of military platforms that need to be smaller and lighter than ever before,” said Rod Rice, General Manager, Military & Aerospace Products at GE Intelligent Platforms. “The SBC326, and the products that will follow, address these needs by delivering more computing bandwidth in each chassis slot – enabling subsystems to deliver more capability with the same size, weight and power, or to deliver a level of capability that previously required more size, weight and power.”


The first Kontron intelligent platforms to feature the 4th generation Intel Core processors will be COM Express, Mini-ITX, 6U CompactPCI, and the Kontron SYMKLOUD Media cloud platforms. They integrate new features such as the Intel AVX2 instructions, which dramatically accelerate floating-point-intensive computations and the improved Intel AES-NI, which accelerates data encryption and decryption. Graphics-intensive applications will profit from the graphics performance which has been doubled in comparison to solutions based on the previous generation processors, while the thermal footprint has remained nearly the same.

"With our early launch parallel to the introduction of the new processor technology on a rich selection of standard embedded computing platforms, we are enabling our OEM customers to kick-start the development of their latest state-of-the-art intelligent systems. Both OEMs and users will benefit from improved graphics capabilities and impressive computing power that come along with a more eco-friendly power consumption in operating as well as in sleep mode," said Norbert Hauser, Head of Business Line Industrial Automation at Kontron.

Target applications include digital signal and image processing applications in the medical, industrial automation and MAG (Military, Aerospace and Government) markets, as well as cloud-based video transcoding for content delivery networks.

Mercury Systems, Inc.

Mercury Systems, Inc. has expanded its family of powerful system building blocks with the new rugged Ensemble* Series 6U OpenVPX HDS6502 High Density Server (HDS) module.

2013-06-04 Mercury Systems HDS6502-AC.jpg

“The HDS6502 is a natural and complementary evolution to our other HDS/LDS (High Density Server/Low Density Server) product solutions ideally suited to high performance, real-time embedded applications,” said Gregg Ogden, Director of Solutions and Product Marketing, Mercury Systems. “But that is only half the story: this module is also a critical building block for our existing customers, enabling them to future-proof their legacy systems through targeted upgrades. Upgrades using the HDS6502 preserve their software, optimize SWaP (Size, Weight and Power) performance, and, true to Mercury tradition, more again can be achieved with less. And this is all done while enabling full OpenCL implementation. The whole concept of open systems is broadened by through the use of OpenCL programming support across multiple platforms.”

“The Intel® Core™ i7-4700EQ with Intel Advanced Vector Extension 2.0 support and an on-die Intel® HD Graphics 4600 GPU enables high volume graphic rendering and simultaneous data manipulation of real-time vector-based information which is characteristic of signal and image processing-intensive applications,” said Marc Couture, Director of Product Management, Mercury Systems. “OpenCL support promotes a heterogeneous ecosystem which, packaged within a rugged module, is an ideal cornerstone for embedded system upgrades and new computing-intensive applications with stringent SWaP specifications. This is a significant adoption of commercial silicon integration, power and performance improvements applied into the defense marketplace.”


Portwell, Inc. announced the release of the PCOM-B630VG, a Type 6 COM Express Basic (125mm x 95mm) module featuring a 4th generation Intel Core processor. This translate into higher performance with reduced manageability costs, which along with new security features make the PCOM-B630VG an ideal solution for Medical Healthcare Systems, Digital Signage and Retail Systems.

The PCOM-B630VG COM Express module supports up to 16GB ECC DDR3L 1333/1600 MT/s SDRAM on two 204-pin SODIMM sockets, making it faster than its predecessor. Its expansion interface supports one PCI Express x16 Gen3 (8.0GT/s) with three controllers integrated into the processor for enhanced video performance and enhanced capabilities which can also be configurable to 2 x8-lane or 1 x8-lane and 2 x4-lane PCI Express ports. The module supports three independent displays, DP (DisplayPort), HDMI or DVI and VGA, with up to 1.6x greater 3D performance compared to its previous generation.

American Portwell Technology, Inc., announced the Portwell ROBO-8112VG2AR, a full-size PICMG 1.3 form factor System Host Board (SHB). Portwell’s ROBO-8112VG2AR implements flexible PCI Express expansion which is ideal for a range of applications across several fields, such as Factory Automation, Image Processing, Medical and Military.

Real-Time Systems GmbH

Real-Time Systems announced Real-Time Hypervisor support for the 4th generation Intel Core processors. The RTS Hypervisor allows the parallel execution of multiple, independent operating systems on a single hardware platform based on processors with the new Intel microarchitecture.

The dual- and quad-core 4th generation Intel Core processors with their enhanced support for virtualization lends itself to be partitioned using an embedded Hypervisor where each partition containing one or multiple CPUs can carry its own, independent operating system even for hard real-time purposes.

By utilizing the RTS Hypervisor, a traditional embedded system, typically consisting of an industrial PC for the user interface and a separate hardware for real-time tasks, can now be replaced by a single hardware solution carrying multiple independent operating systems. Building a manageable, secure system with e.g. Microsoft Windows® safely in parallel to a real-time operating system on just one board based on the 4th generation Intel Core processor, reduces the bill of materials while increasing a system’s reliability and reducing power consumption.

"Our customers keep asking for processors with more and more performance but at the same time, the CPUs should use less and less power to keep temperature in a cabinet or housing at a minimum" said Gerd Lammers, CEO of Real-Time Systems in Germany. "This new generation of the Intel microarchitecture with its improved power efficiency and enhanced CPU performance is ideal for these types of applications. For this reason it was important that we had our Hypervisor ready for our customers the same day Intel released their new generation of x86 processors."

TenAsys Corporation

TenAsys Corporation announced that it has validated its key products: INtime* family of Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) and eVM* for Windows Embedded Virtualization Manager (VMM), for use on the 4th generation Intel Core processor family.

The 4th generation Intel Core processor family delivers a new level of graphic and digital signaling performance that makes it particularly desirable for applications that combine the need for an advanced Human Man Interfaces (HMI) with advanced processing.

“TenAsys’ real-time embedded virtualization technologies have been fully aligned with Intel’s multicore strategy in supporting evolving usage models,” said Kim Hartman, TenAsys’ Vice President of Marketing and Sales. “Our embedded virtualization technologies partition a multicore platform such that users can run mixed workloads on the same platform and make better use of Intel Core processor advanced features. This allows them to integrate multiple advanced HMI’s and control applications on a single system providing customers with comprehensive, cost-reduced, integrated solutions.”

Round-Up of Current Announcements






COM Express



4th generation Intel Core i7 processor





Embedded Computer System

Matrix MXE-5400


COM Express


4th generation Intel Core i5/i7 processors and the Intel Q87 chipset



Mini-ITX motherboard


MicroATX motherboard


ATX motherboard


CompactPCI Platforms


VPX blades


Network Application Platform


Concurrent Technologies


TR B12/msd

Intel Core i7-4700EQ processor and Intel QM87 Express chipset

Congatec AG

Type 6 COM Express


Intel Core i7-4700EQ processor and Intel QM87 Express chipset

Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions

Rugged OpenVPX DSP engine


Intel Core i7-4700EQ processor

Rugged, 6U VME64 SBC


Extreme Engineering Solutions, Inc. (X-ES)

3U and 6U VPX


Intel Core i7-4700EQ processor



3U and 6U CompactPCI




COM Express


GE Intelligent Platforms

Rugged 3U VPX SBC


4th generation Intel Core i7 processor



3U and 6U CompactPCI


Dual processor multiprocessor


COM Express


4th generation Intel Core processor



6U CompactPCI


SYMKLOUD Media cloud platforms

Symkloud MS2900 Media

Mercury Systems

Rugged Ensemble Series 6U OpenVPX High Density Server (HDS) module

Ensemble HDS6502

Dual 4th generation Intel Core i7 processors

Portwell, Inc.

Type 6 COM Express Basic module


4th generation Intel Core processor and Intel QM87 Express chipset

PICMG 1.3 form factor System Host Board (SHB)


4th generation Intel Core processor

Real-Time Systems

Real-Time Hypervisor support

RTS Hypervisor

4th generation Intel Core processors

TenAsys Corporation

Real-Time Operating System (RTOS)


4th generation Intel Core processors

For Windows Embedded Virtualization Manager (VMM)



Table 1: A sampling of the many products with 4th generation Intel Core processors or software supporting the processors.




Learn More

Solutions in this blog:

  • See table for complete listing


Related topics:


Advantech, Kontron, and Portwell are Premier members of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance.


ADLINK, congatec AG, and GE Intelligent Platforms are Associate members of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance.


Concurrent Technologies, Real-Time Systems GmbH, and TenAys are Affiliate members of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance.


Curtiss-Wright Controls Defense Solutions, Extreme Engineering Solutions, Inc. (X-ES), and Mercury Systems, Inc. are General members of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance.


Jerry Gipper

OpenSystems Media®, by special arrangement with the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance

Editorial Director, OpenSystems Media, VITA Technologies