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April 8, 2024

Exciting Embedded World News (And More)

COM-HPCInteredgeMember NewsModBlox7Open Standards

More than 45 PICMG members will be exhibiting at Embedded World 2024. For the first time at the world’s largest trade fair dedicated to embedded technology, PICMG is the subject of two technical conference tracks. We’ll be hosting a 30th Anniversary Reception on Wednesday, April 10th, that’s open to all PICMG members as well as the press; we expect more than 150 attendees.

There is a lot of excitement around PICMG at Embedded World 2024, but those activities don’t even mention all the PICMG-related news released ahead of and during the show. From exciting industry partnerships to new branding, here are some of highlights from the PICMG news releases you’ll see around Embedded World 2024.

  • PICMG Celebrates Its 30th Anniversary—To celebrate this milestone, PICMG is rolling out all new branding, with new logos for all related specifications, in Hall 5, booth 5-342 at this year’s Embedded World in Nuremberg.
  • PICMG, OPAF Partnership to Advance Open Process Control Technology—The partnership fills a gap in edge controller hardware that exists in the O-PAS™ Standard—an open architectural framework for developing industrial process automation systems, currently being defined by OPAF initiatives.
  • PICMG ModBlox7 Specification To Be Showcased at 2024 Embedded World—In support of the ModBlox7 ratification, one of PICMG’s newest specifications, multiple members are collectively showcasing their newest products based on the spec at the 2024 Embedded World exhibition.
  • PICMG Announces Release of InterEdge Standard for Open, Modular Process Control Systems—The IEC 61499 and IEC 61131-compatible InterEdge specification promises to revolutionize the industry with an interoperable, multi-vendor alternative to proprietary Industrial PCs (IPCs), Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs), and Distributed Control Systems (DCSs).
  • PICMG Bolsters New COM-HPC “Mini” Form Factor with Release of Carrier Design Guide Revision 2.2—This comprehensive document contains interface schematics, diagrams, design rules and requirements, and more for PCB layout engineers and hardware developers looking to create application-specific carrier boards that pair with COM-HPC modules.
  • TO COME! An Announcement from PICMG and the DMTF!

The Show(s) Must Go On

We’re only through the first quarter of 2024 and we’ve seen two new specification families introduced, multiple new specifications released, a call for participation on a new version of a familiar technology (AdvancedTCA), strengthened partnerships with multiple standards organizations, and more.

Later this month PICMG will be sponsoring the IEEE Real-Time Conference (RTC) in Vietnam, which serves as rallying point for a critical emerging deep tech economy (https://indico.cern.ch/event/940112/program). We will act as an umbrella for multiple members who develop and deliver products into this sector, and also participate in a Women in Engineering (WiE) event (https://indico.cern.ch/event/940112/page/33210-women-in-engineering-wie-event).

Later this year we will visit Embedded World North America in Austin, the MicroTCA Summit in Hamburg, and many more in-person and virtual events in between. Right now is one of the more exciting times in PICMG’s 30-year history, and I feel fortunate to be part of it.

(Editor’s note: If you’d like to attend the 30th Anniversary Reception and have yet to receive an invite or RSVP, contact [email protected], [email protected], or [email protected] to get on the list or schedule a meeting).

April 8, 2024

PICMG, OPAF Partnership to Advance Open Process Control Technology

Industry NewsInteredgeNewsOpen Standards

  • Partnership seeks to reduce technology integration, maintenance, and upgrade costs in the process automation industry.
  • Work supports the Open Process Automation™ Standard (O-PAS), a standard of The Open Group, that defines resilient and scalable process automation system architectures.
  • Collaboration establishes a multi-vendor ecosystem for interoperable, interchangeable edge hardware via specifications like InterEdge.

WAKEFIELD, MA. PICMG, the consortium for open hardware specifications, has entered a liaison partnership with The Open Group Open Process Automation™ Forum (OPAF) to collaboratively develop interoperable, interchangeable technology specifications for the process control industry. The partnership fills a gap in edge controller hardware that exists in the O-PAS™ Standard—an open architectural framework for developing industrial process automation systems, currently being defined by OPAF initiatives.

Governed by The Open Group, OPAF membership is comprised of 110+ member organizations, including companies like Exxon Mobil, Schneider Electric, Phoenix Contact, Intel, and others. These companies work collaboratively to address the needs of end users in the process control market through initiatives like the O-PAS Standard. The O-PAS framework references existing standards wherever possible or, in the absence of such standards, works with associated organizations to achieve proper standard definition.

To complete and standardize work on an edge controller performed by OPAF member Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), The Open Group forum evaluated several hardware standards development organizations. The OPAF Members selected PICMG to develop a new open edge hardware technology specification that defines electromechanical interoperability, interchangeability, hot plug capabilities, and compatibility with existing standards such as IEC 61499 and IEC 61131.

The result was the recently ratified InterEdge specification.

Collaborative Standards Development Yields InterEdge Specification
Founded in 1994, PICMG is a consortium of more than 150 member companies that defines open, interoperable, and multi-vendor technology specifications for high-performance embedded computing platforms. With a heritage of specifications that span edge-to-cloud use cases, including CompactPCI, AdvancedTCA, and COM Express, PICMG brings a proven process and track record of successfully producing lasting, quality technology specifications.

“During development of the O-PAS Standard, we realized the need for physical hardware that provided interchangeability in an interoperable way,” explained David DeBari, Process Control Engineering Associate at ExxonMobil. “Because our focus is primarily on the software side, we opted to bring in third-party expertise. PICMG was the organization that best fit our needs in that regard—a lot of our suppliers were involved with them already, so working together was the natural choice.”

The InterEdge specification introduces a modular open architecture that delivers state-of-the-art I/O abstraction and flexibility and in a common physical form factor. It supports the OPAF and O-PAS goals of reducing integration, maintenance, and upgrade costs in the highly fragmented and largely proprietary process control technology market.

Collaboration for A More Open Industry
The OPAF and PICMG relationship is ongoing, with work on new versions of the InterEdge specification already underway. Meanwhile, the Open Process Automation Forum has introduced InterEdge to its physical platform subcommittee, who plan to include the specification in an upcoming revision of the O-PAS Standard and devise a set of tests that evaluate conformance to the InterEdge specification.

“Through standardization, proprietary physical interfaces are quickly becoming a thing of the past. The InterEdge standard from PICMG is the first step in that transition for process automation industry end users. Enabling hardware interchangeability allows end users to select components based on performance characteristics instead of physical interface compatibility. We look forward to seeing this key quality attribute normatively referenced in the O-PAS standard”, added Aneil Ali, Forum Director of The Open Group Open Process Automation Forum.

“Our relationship with PICMG is invaluable. It is industry changing,” Steve Bitar, former ExxonMobil automation advisor and secretary of the PICMG InterEdge working group. “And we already know that some of our vendors will use—or are already using—other PICMG standards like COM-Express and COM-HPC. That level of collaboration and integration brings us a step closer to our vision—an industry built on open architecture standards and qualifications that are supported by end users, suppliers, and integrators alike.”

Learn More
The InterEdge specification is available now and can be purchased from the PICMG website for $750. For more information on the OPAF-PICMG liaison relationship, the OPAS standard, or InterEdge, visit:

About The Open Group Open Process Automation Forum (OPAF)
The Open Process Automation Forum (OPAF) is an international forum of end users, system integrators, suppliers, academic institutions, and other standards organizations working together to develop a standards-based, open, secure, and interoperable process control architecture. The Forum is part of The Open Group, aglobal consortium that enables the achievement of business objectives through technology standards. Our diverse membership of more than 900 organizations includes customers, systems and solutions suppliers, tool vendors, integrators, academics, and consultants across multiple industries. For more information, go to https://www.opengroup.org.

About PICMG
Founded in 1994, PICMG is a not-for-profit 501(c) consortium of companies and organizations that collaboratively develop open standards for high performance industrial, Industrial IoT, military & aerospace, telecommunications, test & measurement, medical, and general-purpose embedded computing applications. There are more than 150 member companies that specialize in a wide range of technical disciplines, including mechanical and thermal design, single board computer design, high-speed signaling design and analysis, networking expertise, backplane, and packaging design, power management, high availability software and comprehensive system management.

Key standards families developed by PICMG include COM-HPC, COM Express, CompactPCI, AdvancedTCA, MicroTCA, AdvancedMC, CompactPCI Serial, InterEdge, ModBlox7, SHB Express, MicroSAM, and HPM (Hardware Platform Management). For more information, visit https://www.picmg.org.

April 8, 2024

PICMG Open Standards Consortium Celebrates 30th Anniversary at Embedded World

Industry NewsNewsOpen Standards

  • 30th anniversary highlighted by two new specification families and industry partnerships
  • New PICMG branding on display at embedded world Hall 5, Booth 342
  • Reception for PICMG members to be held on Wednesday, April 10th at Nuremberg Messe

April 8th, Nuremberg, Germany. For 30 years, PICMG has been shaping the embedded computing industry with standards. However, the organization is by no means resting on its laurels. Quite the opposite: with the ratification of two completely new standards just this year, the consortium and its members are looking forward to the next 30 years. To celebrate this milestone, PICMG is rolling out all new branding, with new logos for all related specifications, in Hall 5, booth 5-342 at this year’s embedded world in Nuremberg.

Founded in 1994, PICMG is a nonprofit consortium of companies and organizations that collaboratively develop open standards for high performance embedded computing applications used by the telecommunications, military, and industrial market sectors.

There are over 140 member companies that specialize in a wide range of technical disciplines, including mechanical and thermal design, single board computer design, very high speed signaling design and analysis, networking expertise, backplane and packaging design, power management, High Availability software, and comprehensive system management. Over 40 members will be showcasing their products based on PICMG specifications at the 2024 Embedded World.

Some of the standards families developed under PICMG include COM-HPC, COM Express®, MicroTCA®, CompactPCI® Serial, AdvancedMC®, CompactPCI®, AdvancedTCA®, as well as the newly ratified ModBlox7 and InterEdge.

In its 30 years of operation, PICMG has published over 60 specifications developed by participants from hundreds of companies. Work across a wide range of markets, applications, and technologies continues as the boundaries of datacom, telecom, mil/aero, industrial, man machine interface applications, and deeply embedded computing blur.

Thousands of products ranging from components, subsystems, and complete application ready systems are commercially available and represent over $5B USD in yearly global revenue.

To Learn More:
Visit the “Value of Open Standards Page” here. Discover more about the open standards environment and learn how your company can participate and profit from belonging to PICMG here. Or, attend the 2024 Embedded World Exhibition & Conference to meet with PICMG representatives in person.

About PICMG
Founded in 1994, PICMG is a not-for-profit 501(c) consortium of companies and organizations that collaboratively develop open standards for high-performance industrial, Industrial IoT, military & aerospace, telecommunications, test & measurement, medical, and general-purpose embedded computing applications. There are more than 150 member companies that specialize in a wide range of technical disciplines, including mechanical and thermal design, single board computer design, high-speed signaling design and analysis, networking expertise, backplane, and packaging design, power management, high availability software and comprehensive system management.

Key standards families developed by PICMG include COM-HPC, COM Express, CompactPCI, AdvancedTCA, MicroTCA, AdvancedMC, CompactPCI Serial, InterEdge, ModBlox7, SHB Express, MicroSAM, and HPM (Hardware Platform Management). For more information, visit https://www.picmg.org.