Catching Up With the Latest in the VPX World

We haven’t focused on VPX technology in a while, so we figured you might like to read a post about some of the things that have been going on in the world of VPX recently that have caught our eye. While there haven’t been any big announcements coming out of VITA lately, there are a couple of trends we’ve noticed that do merit mentioning.

In the online pages of Military & Aerospace Electronics magazine, John Keller reports on how the ongoing pressure the U.S. military is feeling to reduce procurement costs is affecting the makers of embedded systems, especially in terms of adhering to industry standards such as VPX, OpenVPX, and VME. In his article Cost Quickly Becoming a Central Concern for Embedded Computing Backplanes and Chassis, Keller notes that in the current belt-tightening environment military decision-makers are putting greater emphasis in getting more bangs for their bucks than in standardizing their gear.

“Today ever-tightening military technology budgets and the imperative to do more with less are encouraging military electronic systems designers to put their priorities on functionality and cost, and leave architectural choices as secondary considerations,” Keller writes. “On one hand, it can be beneficial to embedded computing providers, because as military budgets shrink, prime contractors are willing to contract out increasing amounts of electronic system work in efforts to attack costs. On the other end, embedded computing suppliers are under more pressure to keep costs low than ever before. This can lead them to unconventional approaches that are less expensive than standard favorites like VME, VPX, and OpenVPX.”

Meanwhile, back at VITA headquarters, the organization’s semi-annual report on the industry contained similar guidance for its members. “[U]ncertainty continues to impact the VME to VPX transition,” white-paper author Ray Alderman writes.  He notes, in this regard, that “VME will continue stronger than expected, with the inflection point moved out beyond 2016” as a transition point. “VITA members are reporting strong design-in activity and the work on remaining specificaitons is moving forward at a rapid pace,” Alderman reports. His final word on the industry in general offers us some comfort: “There is reason for optimism in several military market sub-segments, if you are an innovative engineering-driven company.”

Here at Behlman, we like to think that we’re in the “innovative engineering-driven” category, and we have an optimistic view of the future for VPX technology. For Behlman OpenVPX products, please go to

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