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LDA e4

LDA e4 is a FPGA board and FPGA vendor-agnostic enclosure that transforms any PCIe-compliant FPGA card into a high-end networking device. Unlike current data center solutions where the card is either placed in a rackable server or is chosen as part of FPGA-based switch platform, “your FPGA board + LDA e4” solution has the board right in the center, and all serial links available on it are exposed on a compact switch-like device.

Your FPGA Board + LDA e4 solution features:

48 zSFP+ ports exposing various I/O available on the board
25 GbE and 10GbE Layer 1 Replication
Flexible Operational Environment
Instruments for advanced FPGA development

Up to 48 zSFP+ ports achieved through repurposing of PCIe and other I/O

LDA’s patent-pending technology of I/O repurposing is applied to PCIe and various expansion ports such as FMC connectors, unused SATA links, and others.

Full PCIe bandwidth is not usually needed in network FPGA applications, especially when it is used only for configuration and status reporting. LDA e4 keeps just one PCIe lane for these purposes and reroutes the remaining links to the front panel thus expanding the number of serial links available for network applications.

Example:

A regular FPGA board with PCIe x8 is expanded by 7 and a modern board with PCIe x16 connector by 15 additional serial links / 10G Ethernet ports.

There are many boards available today that can utilize the full 48-port capacity of LDA e4 and provide its users with:

  • 16 x 25.8 Gbps and 32 x 12.5 Gbps ports
  • Full signal recovery, regeneration, and conditioning for each port that increases the reach of the links even via copper cabling.
  • Per-port monitoring and troubleshooting features such as a non-intrusive eye-diagram monitor, PRBS pattern generator and checker, and so on.

25GbE and 10GbE Layer 1 Replication

Layer 1 replication allows switching high-speed data streams at Layer 1 level. In LDA e4 it has an almost undetectable latency of less than 3ns.

In addition to standard 10GbE, LDA e4 introduces support for 25GbE Layer 1 replication placing its users at the cutting edge of today’s network technologies.

Highlights:

25GbE and 10GbE Layer 1 Replication
  • Separate Layer 1 switching fabrics for 25GbE and 10GbE ports.
  • Flexible scenarios (predefined or declared through custom replication rules) allow using either front panel inputs or FPGA outputs as Layer 1 replication sources
  • Sources may be combined to support 50/100GbE Layer 1 replication on the 25GbE matrix, and 40GbE replication on 10GbE matrix.
  • 25GbE and 10GbE matrices may be combined to distribute 10/40GbE Layer 1 source across all 48 ports.
  • 25/50/100GbE Layer 1 support will keep your device in the game for years to come

Provide flexible operational environment

  • Wide range of CPUs supported via COM Express system-on-modules (SOMs) with either type 6 or type 10 form factors. Intel Atom, Core I, and Xeon D Com Express modules are tested.
  • Two internal SSD.
  • USB serial console port
  • Out-of-band management Ethernet port
  • Operating system installed by the customer: just like any server. Typical Linux distributions (Red Hat/CentOS, Ubuntu, ) and Windows are tested. Support for Open Network Linux (ONL) is coming soon!
  • Optional installable LDA management and monitoring tools for Linux and Windows
  • “Zero Configuration” option, when device parameters, such as port speeds, port enable/disabled statuses, Layer 1 replication scenarios are pre-configured at the factory. Operating system and LDA’s management/monitoring software may be pre-installed on request.

ports closeup

Instruments for advanced FPGA development

lda e4 whats inside
  • Precision power control for PCIe FPGA board:
    •       Runtime power monitoring and system fans adjustment
    •       Runtime board power off / power on with operating system running: no more cold-boot to reload the FPGA!
  • 10 ppb TCXO clock source via SMA, FPC connectors and as a PCIe reference clock. May be used by FPGA applications hosted in the enclosure if the board itself does not provide a precision clock source.
  • Two timestamping ports on front panel
  • FPGA debug tools such as JTAG adapters, USB serial ports, etc.
    •       Internal USB ports can be powered off/on at runtime allows resetting unresponsive USB equipment
  • Ultra-fast networking and PCIe startup: under 3 seconds from power-on. Enclosure’s operation does not depend on installed OS.
  • Two high-performance 16K RPM fans are located next to FPGA board (4” away blowing directly on FPGA heatsink), so no additional cooling fans are required on the board.

Certified Boards

Integration Kits

LDA e4 supports any PCIe-compliant FPGA board. To transfer the features and repurpose the auxiliary expansion ports specific to the board as well as extend the solution functionality when possible, LDA provides specialized integration kits. Currently, available integration kits are

  • QSFP
  • SFP
  • FMC / FMC+
  • PCIe power cable
  • Bittware SEP
  • USB Type C
  • CrossPoint Aux

If the cable required for your board is not included in the list, please contact LDA  for customization options. Normally a new type of cable can be developed in ~4 weeks.

Why LDA e4

Ethernet ports (including 25GbE) • 16 ports are 25.8Gbps capable
• 32 ports are up to 12.5Gbps
• Total 48 zSFP+ ports
• Full signal recovery, regeneration, conditioning for each port
PCIe and other serial links conversion into SFP+ ports • Increasing available number of high-speed links based on FPGA board’s PCIe connector type (x4, X8, X16) and/or availability of other serial links (FMC, SATA, etc.).
FPGA board agnostic enclosure Able to host:
• Any PCIe form factor
• Any PCIe FPGA board manufacturer
• Any FPGA vendor
25/50/100GbE and 10/40GbE Layer 1 replication • Under 3ns replication latency
• Both front panel input and FPGA board output can serve as a replication source
• Replication scenarios: predefined as well as configurable through custom rules
Designated precision power control • FPGA board independent power off / power on
• current draw monitoring in real time
• dedicated cooling
Ultra-fast startup time • network and PCIe: under 3 seconds
• Network ports’ operation does not depend on installed OS, given that FPGA board can operate immediately after power-on without additional configuration from host OS
10 ppb OCXO clock source • via SMA, FPC and PCIe connectors
Dimensions : Ultra-short depth, 1U • 16.9” X 1.71” X 12” allows to install two devices back to back in a standard 25” deep rack
Timestamping ports • 2 on front panel
Wide range of supported CPUs • Intel Atom/Xeon D/Core I are supported via COM Express type 6 or type 10 form factors
2 internal 2.5 inch SSDs • Optional with COM Express modules that have on-board storage
Per port signal monitoring tools • PRBS pattern generator, checker
• non-intrusive eye monitor
Out-of-band management • Dedicated Ethernet port
• Micro USB serial console
Internal USB ports • Intended for FPGA debugging tools (JTAG adapters) with full power control
Wide range of supported operating systems • Any up-to-date Linux distribution (Red Hat, CentOS, Ubuntu, etc.)
• Windows
• Dedicated ONL support: coming soon!
Zero configuration option (i.e. no mandatory device configuration) • Device parameters, such as port speeds, switching matrix assignments, may be preconfigured at factory, or by the customer via serial/out-of-band management ports without installing operating system on the host CPU.
Optional installable LDA custom packages • Monitoring
• Diagnostics
• Configuration, etc.