COM-HPC: An Innovative Computing Standard for Server-Grade Performance at the Edge

Taipei, –“Everyone talks about the impact of edge computing on IoT. As a global leader in embedded platforms and IoT integrated solutions, Advantech (stock code: 2395) sees opportunity in the market for cost-performance, balanced architectures from cloud computing to edge computing. At COM-HPC, where our innovative computer-on-modules migrate server-grade performance to the edge, we are working together with PICMG and leading embedded companies to meet these market requirements.” said Rex Lee, Director of Advantech Embedded IoT Group.

Cloud computing, where servers can save and analyze high volumes of data uploaded by end users for specific applications, has been essential to this process. Data is collected, stored, and then analyzed on the cloud to solve problems related to an array of different application scenarios. In order to transmit and analyze big data, the cloud must be extremely powerful—offering high performance and wider bandwidth for successful transmission. As the volume of data increases, “edge computing” is emerging as a key solution to realizing effective data management and making computing processes significantly more efficient.

Currently, there is strong and growing demand for edge computing. COM Express, a very popular standard, has been used for over a decade and the “Type 7” COM Express was created for this purpose. COM-HPC represents the “next generation” technology in this field. Compared with COM Express, COM-HPC supports significantly higher performance levels and features an innovative design that fulfills high-end computing demand.

Although the COM-HPC specification is not ratified as of this article. Advantech is forging ahead with Current spec aligned products for development. Advantech will be updating these offerings once the specification is fully ratified. Advantech will be complaint to the fully released COM-HPC specification once it is ratified. There are two types of COM-HPC for different purposes: one is a server type for high performance computing and data transmission; and the other one is for embedded computing with graphics requirements. With a unique form factor and optimized pin definition, COM-HPC supports powerful CPU, memory capacity up to 1TB, and it offers next generation super-speed interfaces such as PCIe Gen4/5 (16Gbps/32Gbps), USB4.0 (20Gbps), and 10G ports. Such features are highly suitable for edge computing.

COM-HPC specifications are currently under formulation. As a global leader in the embedded market, Advantech plays a key role in the formulation process. This encompasses the early industrial specification ETX, XTX in 2006, COM Express 2.0 in 2010, and COM Express 3.0, including Type 7 in 2017. In 2019, Advantech is honored to work with other leading manufacturers and PICMG to engage in the COM-HPC concept discussion in its earliest stages.

Advantech provides a comprehensive product design and validation process that includes schematics and layout simulation, power transient testing, power quality, and signal integrity using a high bandwidth (25GHz) oscilloscope. This process is helpful for products using a super-speed interface and powerful design, such as COM-HPC. Reliability tests, like thermal shock and harsh environment testing, ensure products are stable and durable. Advantech strives to provide early sample stability, giving customers more time for product development and verification to accelerate the time-to-market.

From embedded design-in service to IoT integration, Advantech provides a one-stop service model for the successful integration of embedded boards, systems, software, displays, and peripherals. A series of integrated IoT solutions and services—from edge computing to cloud services—accelerates IoT solution business development and implementation worldwide.

About Advantech

Advantech’s corporate vision is to enable an intelligent planet. The company is a global leader in the fields of IoT intelligent systems and embedded platforms. To embrace the trends of IoT, big data, and artificial intelligence, Advantech promotes IoT hardware and software solutions with the Edge Intelligence WISE-PaaS core to assist business partners and clients in connecting their industrial chains. Advantech is also working with business partners to co-create business ecosystems that accelerate the goal of industrial intelligence. (