Drones, UAVs, UUVs, and small robotics require increasingly more demanding performance and superior SWaP (Size, Weight, and Power) advantages. COM Express is small and rugged, with a wealth of mezzanine-based modules in various size/performance options. MicroTCA and 3U CompactPCI and CompactPCI Serial are also small and offer high-performance and versatility of options. With the small size of AMCs (Advanced Mezzanine Cards) in MicroTCA, one can utilize a versatile backplane approach in a small, light, and powerful form factor. There are also highly ruggedized implementations of these specifications.
One of the most famous unmanned robots uses CompactPCI technology — The Mars Rover. The system was only expected by NASA to last a few months in Mars’ harsh environment. The computer is still send data today, over 13 years later!