Open Standards

BittWare strongly supports open industry standards that enable companies to develop innovative products that are interoperable with other third party products. By supporting these hardware and software standards we provide our customers with products that they can easily develop applications for, scale to their projects’ needs, and integrate with third party hardware and software. BittWare designs products for both commercial (convection cooled) and rugged (conduction cooled) applications. Our philosophy separates the architecture and design approach between these two market spaces to ensure that the stringent requirements of a ruggedized design are addressed from inception. BittWare products are designed to open standards:
  • VITA Standards
    • 3U and 6U VPX (VITA 46), VPX REDI (VITA 48), OpenVPX (VITA 65)
    • 3U and 6U VME; VXS (VITA 41)
    • FMC (VITA 57), PMC (VITA 36), and XMC (VITA 42)
  • PICMG Standards
    • AMC (Advanced Mezzanine Card) and MicroTCA
    • 3U and 6U CompactPCI
  • PCI-SIG Standards
    • PCIe
    • PCI

VMEBUS International Trade Association ( VITA) Standards

BittWare is a member of VITA, an incorporated, non-profit organization ofvendors and users having a common market interest in real-time, modular embedded computing systems. BittWare currently supports the following VITA standards:

3U and 6U  VPX (VITA 46)

VPX is an approved ANSI standard that provides VMEbus-based systems with support for switched fabrics over a new high speed connector. Defined by the VITA working group, it has been designedspecifically with defense applications in mind, with an enhanced module standard that enables applications and platforms with superior performance. VPX retains VME’s existing 6U and 3U form factors, supporting existing PCI Mezzanine Card and XMC mezzanines (PMC with high-speed serial fabric interconnect), and maintaining the maximum possible compatibility with VMEbus. New generations of embedded computing systems based on the VPX standard reflect the growing significance of high speed serial switched fabric interconnects such as PCI Express, RapidIO, Infiniband and 10 Gigabit Ethernet. VPX gives the large existing base of VMEbus users access to these switched fabrics.


VITA 48 is the Ruggedized Enhanced Design Implementation (REDI) version of VPX. It specificallyprovides enhanced support for various cooling methodologies: enhanced forced-air cooling, advanced conduction cooling, and liquid cooling. It also addresses the use of ESD covers on both sides of the board, a necessary feature for military two-level maintenance strategies.

OpenVPX (VITA 65)

OpenVPX is the end result of a collaboration of industry-leading defense contractors and embeddedmilitary COTS vendors, formed to tackle the issue of developing a comprehensive system specification to define a system architecture for VPX and to ensure interoperability among VPX components. Learn more about OpenVPX.

VXS VME Switched Serial (VITA 41)

VITA 41, VMEbus Switched Serial or VXS, is an approved ANSI standard that combines parallel VMEbus with enhancements to support switched serial fabrics including PCI Express, RapidIO,StarFabric and InfiniBand over a new high speed P0 connector. Backward compatibility is maintained with existing backplanes that do not have a conflicting P0 scheme. Combining the VME2eSST parallel bus with switch fabric technologies for multi-point, high-speed data transfers creates choices for embedded computing designs of all types. The standard also incorporates ANSI/VITA 1.7, allowing more DC power input into each board.

FMC FPGA Mezzanine Card (VITA 57)

FPGA Mezzanine Card, or FMC, as defined in VITA 57, provides a specification describing an I/O mezzanine module with connection to an FPGA or other device with reconfigurable I/O capability.The low profile design allows use on popular industry standard slot card, blade and motherboard form factors, including VME, VPX, CompactPCI, AdvancedTCA, MicroTCA, PCI, PXI, and many other low profile motherboards. The compact size is highly adaptable to many configuration needs and compliments existing common low profile mezzanine technology such as PMC, XMC, and AMC.

PMC PCI Mezzanine Card (VITA 36)

This standard combines the electrical characteristics of the PCI bus with the mechanical dimensions of the Common Mezzanine Card or CMC format.

XMC Switched Mezzanine Card(VITA 42)

The XMC standard enhances PMC with a high-speed serial fabric interconnect.

PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group (PICMG) Standards

BittWare is a member of the PICMG, the governing body of the PCI Trade Association.We contribute to the PICMG working groups that are actively renewing the cPCI and ATCA architecture and ecosystem. We currently support the following PICMG standards:

Advanced Mezzanine Card (AMC)

The Advanced Mezzanine Card (AdvancedMC) specifications denoted AMC.x are a series of PICMG specifications, that take the extensive knowledge and practices developed with AdvancedTCA and applies them to the area of smaller form factor mezzanine cards.

3U and 6U CompactPCI

CompactPCI is a specification for PCI-based industrial computers. It is electrically a superset of desktop PCI with a different physical form factor. CompactPCI utilizes the Eurocard form factor popularized by the VME bus.

PCI Special Interest Group (PCI-SIG) Standards

BittWare is a member of the PCI-SIG, whose goal is to deliver a stable, straightforward and compatible standard for PCI devices. We currently support the following PCI-SIG standards:

PCI Express (PCIe)

PCI Express is a high-speed serial computer expansion bus standard designed to replace the older PCI, PCI-X, and AGP bus standards. PCIe has numerous improvements including higher maximum system bus throughput, lower I/O pin count and smaller physical footprint, better performance-scaling for bus devices, a more detailed error detection and reporting mechanism, and native hot-plug functionality.


PCI is a local computer bus for attaching hardware devices in a computer. The PCI bus supports the functions found on a processor bus, but in a standardized format that is independent of any particular processor. Devices connected to the bus appear to the processor to be connected directly to the processor bus, and are assigned addresses in the processor’s address space.


OpenVPX:  An independent association addressing VPX system interoperability issues

The OpenVPX Working Group was a collaboration of industry-leading defense contractors and embedded military COTS vendors, formed to tackle the issue of developing a comprehensive system specification to define a system architecture for VPX and to ensure interoperability among VPX components. BittWare was a member of the OpenVPX Working Group as well as the Steering Committee. VPX is an ANSI standard, defined by the VME bus International Trade Association (VITA) to provide support for serial switch fabrics over a new high-speed connector as well as to operate in harsh environments. For years, VPX was largely focused at the board level, and industry leaders saw a need to develop a system-level standard to improve interoperability and reduce customization, testing, cost, and risk. OpenVPX brings together the wide range of VPX expertise of many industry leaders, resulting in a standard that enables the best of VPX technologies. The OpenVPX working group committed to an aggressive timeline for completing the OpenVPX System Specification. In October 2009, they handed the specification to the VITA Standards Organization (VSO) for ratification as VITA 65.