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NAT MicroTCA Carrier Hub


The NAT-MCH is a MicroTCA (µTCA) Carrier Hub that uses IDT Tsi578 switches in the form factor of a single width double height Advanced Mezzanine Card (AMC). It provides the central management and data switching entity for all MicroTCA systems using RapidIO.                                              
The NAT-MCH comprises of a base module and numerous optional daughter cards that can be mounted on the base module. The NAT-MCH is MicroTCA.0 R1.0 compliant and delivers switching and hub functionality for the various system fabrics as defined in the AMC.x standard series; in essence, Gigabit Ethernet, PCI Express® (PCIe®), Serial RapidIO® (S-RIO), and Serial Attached SCSI (SAS). The NAT-MCH can also provide a centralized clock distribution to all AMCs in a system. 
CPU, Memory, and OS
The NAT-MCH base board is equipped with a CPU of the Freescale™ ColdFire family of processors. The CPU operates at core frequency of 200 MHz. The NAT-MCH provides 32/64 MB SDRAM and 16/32/64 MB FLASH memory. The operating system used with the NAT-MCH is OK1 or Linux.
SRIO Hub Module Details
The NAT-MCH can be equipped with a Serial RapidIO daughter board to support point-to-point connectivity between up to 12 AMC modules in a single chassis. The S-RIO hub supports 1x and 4x fat pipe transport density supporting up to 10 Gbps data rate per link, with the industry’s lowest power, lowest latency and best peer to peer processor clustering.
Clock Distribution
Besides the PCIe clocks the NAT-MCH also offers a sophisticated clock distribution module for special requirements (for example, communications applications). Thus, the module allows a flexible selection of the telecom and non-telecom clocking structures as defined in MicroTCA.0 R1.0. The on-board Stratum 3 type PLL sources its clock reference configurable from either any of the 12 AMCs or from an external clock via the front panel BNC type connector.
The NAT-MCH incorporates a MicroTCA Carrier Management Controller (MCMC) which supports and manages up 12 AMCs, 2 cooling units and 1 to 4 power units. Special care has been taken to support numerous aspects of system architectures; that is, E-Keying, redundancy, clocking, fail-over scenarios or system integrity. In order to connect the MCH to an external shelf or system manager the NAT-MCH offers a 100BaseT port at the front panel. The management interface and the available N.A.T. remote control and visualization application, µView, is based on the HPI recommendation of the Service Availability Form (SAF).
For more information about the NAT-MCH, see
  • CPU and memory
    • Freescale ColdFire 547 x @ 200 MHz
    • DRAM: 32/64 MB
    • FLASH: 16/32/64 MB
  • IPMI and Compliance
    • 12 AMCs
    • Two cooling units
    • 1-4 power units
    • PICMG AMC.0 R1.0
    • PICMG 2.9 R1.0
  • Fabric D-G
    • Serial RapidIO (PICMG AMC.4)
    • PCI Express (PICMG AMC.1 R1.0)
    • 12 AMCs, x1-x4 each
    • Ten GbE (PICMG AMC.2)
  • Clock distribution
    • Telecom: Stratum 3 PLL with reference from either 1 of the 12 AMCs or external clock via front panel
    • PCIe: Spread Spectrum Clock (100 MHz mean) or oscillator (100 MHz fixed)
  • Carrier manager
    • Management of up to 12 AMCs, 2 cooling units and 1-4 power units, supports redundant architectures and fail-over procedure
  • Shelf and system manager
    • For detached or stand-alone operation both managers are available on-board, hook-in for external managers via 100BaseT port at front panel
  • Operating system and API
    • OS: OK1, Linux
    • API: HPI compliant
  • Indicator LEDs
    • Four standard AMC LEDs
    • 12 bi-color LEDs for AMC slot status
    • Two bi-color LEDs for cooling units
    • Two bi-color LEDs for power units
  • Front panel connectors
    • 100 BaseT management connection
    • External clock reference (bi-directional)
    • Serial debug connector