NAT-MCH

NAT-MCH: MicroTCA (uTCA/MTCA) Carrier Hub

Switching & hub functionality for various system fabrics

Overview
The NAT-MCH is a MicroTCA (uTCA/MTCA) Carrier Hub (MCH) for any standard MicroTCA system. It provides the central management and data switching entity for a MicroTCA system and as such comprises of a base module and numerous optional daughter cards, which can be mounted on the base module.

The NAT-MCH is MTCA.0, MTCA.1, MTCA.2, MTCA.3 and MTCA.4 compliant and delivers switching and hub functionality for the various system fabrics as defined in the AMC.x standard series, including Gigabit Ethernet (GbE), PCI Express (PCIe Gen 3), Serial Rapid I/O (SRIO Gen 2) or 10 Gigabit Ethernet (XAUI) or custom protocols based on the Xilinx Kintex-7 FPGA. The NAT-MCH can also provide centralized clock distribution to all AMCs in the system.

The NAT-MCH is a member of the NAT-MCH family of MCHs, which consists of:
Clocking
The NAT-MCH offers a sophisticated clock distribution module that allows a flexible selection of telecom and non-telecom clocking structures in the frequency range between 1Hz and 100MHz. The on-board Stratum 3/3E type PLL can be locked to a clock coming from any of the 12 AMCs or which is externally provided via the front panel SMA connectors. These front panel SMA connectors can also be used to provide an internal clock to external devices, i.e. for synchronizing several MicroTCA systems to exactly the same clock reference.

With respect to the PCIe clock, the NAT-MCH supports HCSL signal level as required by PCI-SIG. For special low jitter and low latency requirements applications N.A.T. offers the NAT-MCH-CLK-PHYS together with the NAT-MCH-PHYS and NAT-MCH-PHYS80 products.

1GbE and 10GbE (XAUI) Ethernet Switches 
The Ethernet switches of the NAT-MCH both incorporate a Layer 2, non-blocking, low-latency Gigabit Ethernet switch, supporting port-based and tagged VLAN, Rapid Spanning Tree as well as a port-based rate control. The NAT-MCH always provides service for 1GbE (Fabric A) and optionally service for 10GbE/XAUI (Fabrics D-G). The implementation is according to the respective MTCA and AMC specifications, including PICMG SFP.1 R1.0, serving up to 13 AMCs (12 AMC + AMC13 in 2nd MCH slot) as well as the update channel from the second MCH in redundant environments. The NAT-MCH also provides uplink ports on the front panel for both fabrics in order to interconnect to other systems.

PCI Express Gen 3 Switch
The PCI Express switching hub allows PCIe Gen 3 connectivity for up to 12 AMCs at PCIe rates from x1 to x4. The PCIe chipsets provide a quality of service (QoS) module and are configurable in terms of a non-transparent port for multi-host support. The PCIe option can provide a PCIe clock at HCSL signaling level by a spread spectrum clock (100MHz mean) or a fixed 100MHz clock. The PCIe hub provides clustering support for six independent clusters with one configurable non-transparent upstream port. Each cluster offers its own transparent upstream port.

SRIO Gen 2 Switch
The NAT-MCH can also be optionally equipped with a Serial Rapid I/O (SRIO Gen 2) switching hub to support very low latency point-to-point connectivity between up to 12 AMCs. The SRIO hub supports x1 and x4 lane configurations. Although it is SRIO Gen 2, the switch module is backwards compatible to SRIO Gen 1 and supports any mixture of SRIO Gen 1 and  Gen 2 AMC modules.

Custom Protocol Switch (based on Xilinx Kintex-7 FPGA)
This special hub module combines a fast and low latency SRIO Gen 2 switch with a fully-customizable Xilinx Kintex-7 FPGA. It can be used for switching or multiplexing CPRI (Common Public Radio Interface), OBSAI (Open Base Station Architecture), standard (e.g. SRIO, XAUI) or any customized serial protocols, establishing a highly adaptable and flexible interconnect for up to 12 Advanced Mezzanine Cards (AMC) in a MTCA system.

Using the SFP+ connectors, external signals can easily be brought to the system, be manipulated by the FPGA and then distributed to the AMCs. LTE and WiMax applications and others such as Software Defined Radio (SDR) could benefit, for example, by directly providing antenna signals to a farm of high performance digital signal processor (DSP) AMCs. Other applications, such as test and measurement equipment, requiring both a manipulation of the data stream and low latency switching at the same time will benefit from the unique design of the NAT-MCH-FPGA, for example, by reducing the slot count and thus saving costs or releasing slots for additional functionality.

Apart from the high speed serial connections, the Kintex-7 FPGA has access to two independent DDR3 memories (up to 4Gbit each), a low jitter PLL and a Gigabit Ethernet connection to the MCH base module switch. This allows you to implement complex user functionality and therefore can save a full AMC slot.

Management
The NAT-MCH incorporates a MicroTCA Carrier Management Controller (MCMC) which supports and manages up to 12 AMCs plus AMC13 in the 2nd MCH slot of a redundant system, 2 cooling units and 1-4 power modules. The support of a 13th AMC requires a redundant system where the redundant MCH slot is used by this AMC.

Special care has been taken to support numerous aspects of system architectures, such as E-Keying, redundancy, load sharing, clocking, fail-over scenarios and system integrity. External system or shelf managers can conncet to the NAT-MCH via the Ethernet front panel ports. For remote control, N.A.T. provides the Java-based application NATView. Based on the HPI recommendation of the Service Availability Form (SA Forum,now merged with PICMG), NATView accesses the NAT-MCH via Remote Management Control Protocol (RMCP) as required by the MicroTCA.0 specification.

Redundant Environments
The NAT-MCH fully supports redundant management and power environments. Frequent exchange of the internal databases with the secondary MCH and a heart beat mechanism ensure an immediate switch-over from the primary to the secondary MCH whenever it becomes necessary (PCIe fat pipe switch over may require additional precautions). The NAT-MCH-PHYS can handle up to four power modules (such as NAT-PM-DC840 or NAT-PM-AC600) for N+1 configurations.

Software Support and Updates
Apart from the Java GUI NATview, the NAT-MCH also supports external management solutions which are based on the Remote Management Control Protocol (RMCP), such as the open-source tool ipmitool. Furthermore, using the NAT-MIB the NAT-MCH can also be integrated into environments based on the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). The NAT-MCH can be configured using either uploadable text based script files or via the integrated WEB interfaces using a standard web browser. Finally, the integrated debug and configuration facilities can be accessed via a serial console or using Telnet. Customers registering for the firmware update service are automatically notified by e-mail when a new firmware version becomes available.

Overview about mezzanine modules
Please follow this link for an overview about the various mezzanine modules which are available for the NAT-MCH family of products.

Family of MCH products
The NAT-MCH is a member of the NAT-MCH family of MCHs which consists of:

 




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The NAT-MCH is a powerful management and data switching entity for all MicroTCA.0 systems:

  • Management for
    • 12 AMCs + optional AMC13 in 2nd MCH slot
    • 4 power modules including N+1 redundancy
    • Update channel to secondary MCH
  • GigaBit Ethernet switching (Fabric A)
  • Optional PCI Express (Gen 3) switching (Fabrics D-G)
  • Optional SRIO (Gen 2) switching (Fabrics D-G)
  • Optional 10GbE (XAUI) switching (Fabrics D-G)
  • Front panel uplinks
    • 2x 1GbE (load sharing supported)
    • Optional two CX-4 (SRIO and XAUI) or two SFP+ (XAUI) uplinks
    • 2x SMA for external CLK support (bi-directional)
    • USB console
  • Clock generation and distribution by sophisticated clock module NAT-MCH-CLK
  • Configuration options
    • Console (USB, RS232 or Telnet)
    • Script File
    • Web browser 
  • Host based Java GUI for any operating system capable of executing Oracle Java Run-Time Environment (JRE) v1.7 or higher, i.e. Linux, Mac OS-X or Windows
CPU and Memory
  • NXP (Freescale) ColdFire MCF54452 CPU @ 266MHz
  • DDR2 RAM: 32/64MB
  • FLASH: 16/32/64MB


IPMI and Compliance

  • 13 AMCs
  • 2 cooling units
  • 1-4 power modules
  • PICMG AMC.0
  • PICMG 2.9
  • Update to 2nd MCH


Supported Fabrics and Compliance

Fabric A: Gigabit Ethernet

  • 12 AMCs + optional AMC13 in 2nd MCH slot
  • PICMG AMC.2 R1.0
  • PICMG SFP.1 R1.0

Fabric D-G (click for more information)

  • Serial Rapid I/O Gen 2, x1 or x4 (PICMG AMC.4)
  • PCI Express Gen 3, x1 or x4 (PICMG AMC.1 R1.0)
  • 10GbE (XAUI) (PICMG AMC.2)
  • Customized serial protocol (Xilinx Kintex-7 FPGA)
  • 12 AMCs

Clock Distribution (click for more information)
  • Telecom: Stratum 3/3E PLL with reference from either 1 of the 12 AMCs or external clock via front panel, MLVDS signaling
  • PCIe: Spread Spectrum Clock (100MHz mean) or oscillator (100MHz fixed), HCSL signaling
 

Carrier Manager

  • Management of up to 13 AMCs, 4 cooling units and 1-4 power modules
  • Supports redundant architectures and fail-over procedure
  • Support configurable emergency shudown of AMCs or entire system


Shelf and System Manager

  • For detached or stand-alone operation both managers are available on-board, hook-in for external managers via 1GbE port at front panel


Operating System and API

  • O/S: OK1
  • API: HPI compliant


Indicator LEDs

  • 3 standard AMC LEDs
  • 12 bi-colour LEDs for AMC slot stati
  • 2 bi-colour LEDs for cooling units
  • 2 bi-colour LEDs for power modules


Front Panel Connectors

  • 2x 1GbE for management connection and Fabric A system up-link (load sharing supported)
  • 1GbE system up-link for Fabric A
  • External clock reference (bi-directional)
  • USB debug connector (console)
  • Fat Pipe uplink for Fabric D-G (SRIO and XAUI)
Title
Description
Format
Size
Rev #
Date Last Modified
nat-mch_ds Data sheet and NAT-MCH family overview pdf 1.179 KB 1.4 06-07-2012
nat_mch_man_usr NAT-MCH Users Manual pdf 2.9 MB 1.31 26-08-2016
nat_mch_ethx_man_usr User's Manual for 1G/10G Ethernet Switches   pdf  3.0 MB   2.1 12-10-2015 
nat_mch_base_v2x_man_hw
Hardware Manual for base board v2x pdf   568 KB  2.1 12-11-2010 
nat_mch_base_v3x_man_hw  Hardware Manual for base board v3.x pdf  1.1 MB  2.10  23-04-2015 
nat_mch_clk_v2x_man_hw  Hardware Manual for CLK module v2.x pdf 439 KB   1.4 12-11-2010 
nat_mch_clk_v3x_man_hw   Hardware Manual for CLK module v3.x pdf   683 KB 1.1   12-11-2010 
nat_mch_clk_v41_man_hw    Hardware Manual for CLK module v4.x pdf  904 KB   1.3  30-06-2014
nat_mch_clk_phys_man_hw
   Hardware Manual for CLK module PHYS pdf  969 KB   1.3 30-06-2014 
nat_mch_clk-e1t1_v10_man_hw Hardware Manual for CLK module E1/T1 pdf 874 KB 1.0 31-08-2015
nat_mch_pciex48_v1x_man_hw  Hardware Manual for PCIexpress x48 hub v1.x pdf  437 KB   1.0 12-11-2010 
nat_mch_pciex48_v2x_man_hw Hardware Manual for PCIexpress x48 hub v2.x pdf  762 KB   1.2 30-06-2014 
nat_mch_sriox48_v1x_man_hw   Hardware Manual for SRIO x48 hub v1.x  pdf 512 KB  1.2  12-11-2010 
nat_mch_sriox48_v2_man_hw   Hardware Manual for SRIO x48 hub v2.x  pdf  768 KB 1.5  08.01.2016 
nat_mch_xauix48_v1x_man_hw  Hardware Manual for 10GbE/XAUI hub v1.x pdf  734 KB  1.2  30-06-2014 
nat_mch_base_v2x_usb2serial USB serial Console installation file, base baord v2.x inf 1.1 KB 1.0 06-08-2009
nat_mch_base_v3x_usb2serial  USB serial Console installation file, base baord v3.x inf  1.0 KB   1.0  22-06-2012
nat_mch_base_v3x_usbdrv_man_sw USB Driver Installation Manual for base baord v3.x pdf 804 KB 1.0 22-06-2012


For further documentation on the NAT-MCH (i.e. technical reference manuals) please contact us using the contact form. Thank you.




NAT-MCH block diagram


Product Code: NAT-MCH - [Options]

Option
Function
Description
-Base12 Base module for 12 AMCs MCH basic management module for 12 AMC boards without Hub functionality for Fabric A

NOTE: this option also replaces former option -Base6
-GbE Gigabit Ethernet at Fabric A Gigabit Ethernet Hub for Fabric A with uplink on front panel and update link to 2nd MCH
-CLK123 Telecom Clock Module - Stratum 3/3E Telecom clock module supporting CLKs 1,2 and 3.
CLK2 of one of the 12 AMC modules or the front panel clock input can be selected as reference clock input for CLK1/3

NOTE: former product name -TCTCXO
-CLK12F Telecom Clock Module - Stratum 3/3E with
PCIe Spread Spectrum Clock (HCSL)
Clock module combining Telecom CLKs 1 and 2 with a PCIe spread spectrum or 100MHz fixed mean clock at CLK3 (HCSL) to all AMCs.
CLK2 of one of the 12 AMC modules or the front panel clock input can be selected as reference clock input for CLK1.

NOTE: former product name -TCTCXO-SSCH
-CLK00F PCIe Spread Spectrum Clock - HCSL Clock Module supporting a PCIe spread spectrum or 100MHz fixed mean clock at CLK3 (HCSL) to all AMCs.

NOTE: former product name -SSCH
-CLK-PHYS Physics Clock Module  Clock Module providing special clock functionality (CLK1-2) dedicated to Physics applications and a PCIe spread spectrum or 100MHz fixed mean clock at CLK3 (HCSL) to all AMCs.
CLK2 of one of the 12 AMC modules or the front panel clock input can be selected as reference clock input for CLK1.
-PCIEx48 PCIe Hub Module for Fabric D-G PCIe Hub module with support for 12 AMC modules.

NOTE: this option also replaces former option -PCIEx24
-SRIOx24 Serial Rapid Hub Module for Fabric D-G Serial Rapid I/O Hub module with support for 6 AMC modules
-SRIOx48 Serial Rapid Hub Module for Fabric D-G Serial Rapid I/O Hub module with support for 12 AMC modules
-XAUIx48 10GbE Hub Module for Fabric D-G 10GbE Hub module with support for 6 AMC modules, based on FULCRUM FM2224

NOTE: this option also replaces former option -XAUIx24
-XAUIx48i 10GBE Hub Module for Fabric D-G 10GbE Hub module with support for 12 AMC modules, based on FULCRUM FM4224

NOTE: this option also replaces former option -XAUIx24i
-UPLNK-CX4 Uplink Module for copper based uplinks uplink module providing fat pipe uplink ports at front panel (options SRIO and XAUI only) by CX-4 connectors
-UPLNK-SFP+ Uplink Module for fibre based uplinks uplink module providing fat pipe uplink ports at front panel (option XAUI only) by SFP+ connectors

NOTE: SFP+ transceivers are not part of this option and can be ordered separately
Front Panel Options
-FP0S MTCA.0 compliant, single width standard MTCA front panel, single width
-FP0M MTCA.0 compliant, mid width standard MTCA front panel, mid width
-FP0D MTCA.0 compliant, double width standard MTCA front panel, double width
-FP1S MTCA.1 compiant, single width ruggedised MTCA front panel, single width
-FP1M MTCA.1 compiant, mid width ruggedised MTCA front panel, mid width
-FP1D MTCA.1 compiant, double width ruggedised MTCA front panel, double width




Accessories:

Product
Function
Description
-CABF10 fibre uplink cable for SRIO or XAUI active optical cable (AOC) for CX4 uplink, length 10m
(other lengths on request)
-CABC5 copper uplink cable for SRIO or XAUI passive copper cable for CX4 uplink, length 5m
(other lengths on request)
-CAB-USB2RS232 converter cable to connect to USB debug port USB to RS232 converter cable
-CABDBG converter cable to connect to USB debug port USB to mini-USB converter cable




Software:

Title
Description
Version
Released
NATView Java based GUI (Graphical User Interface) for monitoring and control of MTCA systems. 2.25 26-08-2016
- Firmware for NAT-MCH, NAT-MCH-PHYS, NAT-MCH-PHYS80 2.18 26-08-2016


Customers registering for the firmware update service will automatically be notified by e-mail when a new firmware version becomes available.