VITA, the trade association dedicated to fostering American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited open system architectures in critical embedded system applications, announced the ratification by ANSI of the OpenVPX System Specification under ANSI/VITA 65.0-2010. OpenVPX is the architecture framework that defines system-level VPX interoperability for multivendor, multimodule, integrated system environments.

The VITA 65 working group set an aggressive goal to have the ANSI ratification completed by the spring of 2010. They have achieved that pace-setting goal by completing the criteria for a successful ballot.

“The efforts of the VITA 65 working group represent a significant shift in the industry,” stated Ray Alderman, executive director of VITA. “Major industry buyers came to us to get an architectural framework for VPX in place, and quickly. The team responded start to finish in less than 14 months, which is quite incredible given the scope of the project.”

“OpenVPX truly defines a system-wide specification that streamlines the use of VPX,” said Neil Peterson, Chairman of the VPX Marketing Alliance. “OpenVPX was defined to give us room to grow the technology and meet future industry needs without impacting current work.”

VPX is gaining design wins in many data-intensive applications where performance in throughput and high-compute density (size) are critical factors. Example applications in which VPX systems are expected to be deployed in the coming year include signal and video processing, radar, communications, transportation, and control and management.

VPX is a broadly defined technology utilizing the latest in a variety of switch fabric technologies in 3U and 6U Eurocard format modules. The OpenVPX framework delineates clear interoperability points necessary for integrating module to module, module to backplane, and chassis. OpenVPX will evolve and incorporate new fabric, connector, and system technologies as new standards are defined.

In support of the VPX family of specifications, VITA members have been rolling out a wide range of products suited to a variety of applications, from backplanes and chassis to 3U and 6U boards of various types Nearly 100 products are already listed in the VITA product directory under OpenVPX, and more are added each week. With the completion of this specification, suppliers are now identifying their products with the profile information necessary to make product selection for specific profiles.

Companies that develop VPX products are encouraged to contact VITA to join the VPX Marketing Alliance. For more information, visit the VPX Marketing Alliance website at

The ANSI/VITA65-2010 document is available from VITA.

About VITA

Founded in 1984, VITA is an incorporated, non-profit organization of suppliers and users who share a common market interest in critical embedded systems. VITA champions open system architectures. Its activities are international in scope, technical, promotional, and user-centric. VITA aims to increase total market size for its members, expand market exposure for suppliers, and deliver timely technical information. VITA has ANSI and IEC accreditation to develop standards (VME, VXS, VPX, OpenVPX™, PMC, XMC, FMC, etc) for embedded systems used in a myriad of critical applications and harsh environments. For further information, visit

“ANSI’s ratification of the VITA 65 standard is significant news and marks an extraordinary conclusion to the OpenVPX™ initiative launched by Mercury a little more than a year ago,” said Ian Dunn, CTO of Mercury Computer Systems. “A cross-industry group developed this specification in record time, and the rapid VITA and ANSI approvals indicates how well the specification has been accepted by the market. Already Mercury is delivering innovative, smart processing solutions for a variety of customers based on this high-performance, interoperable, open specification. We look forward to continuing our involvement and support for the OpenVPX specification.”

Ian Dunn, CTO, Mercury Computer Systems

“General Dynamics Canada commends VITA’s work in developing and gaining ANSI ratification for the OpenVPX™ system specification. By improving the interoperability of VPX components, OpenVPX improves the customer experience, increases market acceptance, and ultimately helps the industry better serve its customers.”

Mark Edwards, Chief Engineer-Vetronics, General Dynamics Canada

“Pentek fully supports the OpenVPX™ standard and its mission to enable interoperability among vendors and promote long-term availability of VPX technology across the industry,” said Rodger Hosking, vice president and co-founder of Pentek, Inc. He added, “The latest embedded system designs have strongly shifted towards serial fabric-based system architectures using both PCIe and SRIO, primarily to improve board-to-board data transfer rates to handle higher signal bandwidths, more powerful FPGAs and processors, and faster peripherals. Pentek has announced a family of OpenVPX products, representing the industry's highest performance data acquisition and software radio boards.”

Rodger Hosking, vice president and co-founder, Pentek, Inc.

“The ratification of VITA 65 by ANSI has validated OpenVPX™ and VPX as the right standards on which to base deployed military applications,” stated Rob Scidmore, CEO and President of Extreme Engineering Solutions (X-ES).

“The reason OpenVPX has gone from concept to ratification so quickly is because of the number of vendors and users that are behind it. This shows there is real momentum and demand behind OpenVPX and we are proud and excited to be part of the effort.”

Rob Scidmore, CEO and President, Extreme Engineering Solutions (X-ES)

“Curtiss-Wright Controls is proud of its participation in the open standards process that resulted in the ANSI ratification of VITA 65,” Lynn Bamford, Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing.

“As a leading supplier of boards and systems designed to be compliant with OpenVPX™, and the first board vendor to publicly demonstrate a working OpenVPX system, we've been very pleased to see the rapid rate at which the rugged deployed aerospace and defense COTS market has embraced VPX as the board architecture of choice for demanding high performance embedded computing. Now, the OpenVPX System specification promises to further speed the growth and adoption of VPX technology and solutions.”

Lynn Bamford, Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing

“We at Elma are very encouraged at the considerable progress made on VITA 65 and the rapid ratification of the standard by ANSI”, says Shan Morgan, Senior Vice President of Elma Electronic Inc. “To ensure the success of VPX in the market demands an interoperable specification openly supported by the embedded industry and its customers, and now we have it.” He added, “We are fully committed to supporting this new architecture with a family of products to enable system platform solutions. This is an extension of the interoperability concept familiar and beneficial to anyone using current standards-based architectures such as VME and cPCI.”

Shan Morgan, Senior Vice President of Elma Electronic Inc.

“Kontron has been an active member of VITA for years and our involvement with the OpenVPX™ working group from day one helped shape Kontron's future VPX product line development. As such, Kontron's current VPX portfolio is already compliant with the OpenVPX standard. All Kontron VPX products are not only designed according to the OpenVPX (VITA 65) standard, but are engineered to offer our customers the fastest and smoothest learning curve on this leading edge architecture. This is necessary to ensure our customers the highest level of interoperability possible.

The VPX standard has been discussed at great length in the past year, but a lot of the market is still exploring how to apply it. At Kontron, our objective is to engineer VPX products that best leverage the standard and offer customers compelling VPX solutions.”Dirk Finstel, CTO, Kontron