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Athena IV

COM-based PC/104 SBC with integrated Data Acquisition
  • Details
  • Specification
  • Order information
  • Bay Trail E3845 quad core 1.91GHz CPU
  • 4GB RAM soldered on COM
  • Form factor and most connectors backwards compatible with previous generations of Athena
  • Operating Temperature: -40°C to +85°C (-40°F to +185°F)

Athena IV is the fourth generation in the Athena family of rugged, wide-temperature PC/104 SBCs with Integrated data acquisition, extending back to the original Athena in 2004. Athena IV is an excellent choice for:

  • Customers using previous generations of Athena seeking to extend the lifetime of their existing product;

  • Customers seeking to replace an obsolete PC/104 SBC with a newer generation one to extend their existing product’s lifetime; or

  • Customers seeking to build a PC/104 system expected to have a long lifetime.

Advantages of a COM-based architecture
Athena IV uses a COM Express Type 10 «mini» Computer-on-Module (COM) to provide the core CPU functionality, mounted on a carrier board that provides the PC/104 expansion and the remaining I/O circuitry.

COM-based PC/104 SBC with integrated Data Acquisition Athena IV
The use of a COM instead of a directly soldered CPU circuit provides several key advantages and benefits:

  • Higher feature density: a 2-board solution provides twice the PCB area in the given footprint, allowing more circuitry and more features to be included.

  • Longer lifetime: Since all COMs in a given form factor support essentially the same features, if the COM becomes obsolete or unavailable, a newer one can be used in its place, usually with minimal re-engineering.

  • Performance scalability: COM Express modules are available from a number of suppliers around the world with multiple processor and memory options, allowing a single design to be used for a range of applications. For a lower-end application, choose a low-power, low-performance COM. For a higher end application, choose a higher performance COM. In both cases the rest of the system remains identical, allowing your investment in engineering and product design to be reused multiple times.

  • Easier access to newer generation CPUs: Most processors enter the market initially in the form of COMs. By using a COM-based SBC, you can gain access to the latest generation of CPU sooner than waiting for a true SBC with that processor to be available. Again, upgrading is simple since the rest of the system remains unchanged.

Maintaining a legacy for long life applications
Each generation of Athena maintained the same physical shape and most of the I/O connectors and features of the previous generations, while updating key features to stay current with the state of the art. In this way the Athena platform has maintained a low-impact migration path for customers with extended product lifecycles that outstrip the lifetimes of the CPU. Many customers have been able to maintain their products for up to 16 years as a result.

Integrated Data Acquisition
Athena IV is a member of Diamond’s 2-in-1 series of SBCs with integrated data acquisition. For applications requiring precision analog I/O, a 2-in-1 SBC is an ideal choice because it reduces the number of boards in the system, resulting in a system that is smaller, lighter, lower cost, and easier to assemble and maintain.

The data acquisition circuit on Athena IV includes 16 channels of 16-bit A/D, 4 channels of 12-bit D/A, and 24 channels of digital I/O. The analog inputs feature single-ended and differential configuration, programmable input ranges, and fault-protected channel multiplexors to protect against overvoltages. The D/A channels feature programmable output ranges and simultaneous update capability. Both A/D and D/A circuits include Diamond’s advanced autocalibration technology, enabling the board to be quickly calibrated in software without the use of trimpots that are subject to tampering, mis-adjustment, or shock and vibration. The A/D and D/A circuits feature lower noise, higher bandwidth, and more configuration flexibility than competing analog I/O circuits.

All Diamond’s analog and digital I/O circuits are supported by our Universal Driver programming library for Windows and Linux. This software package includes a suite of demo programs in source and executable form. A convenient GUI program supports quick and convenient operation of all I/O features and can be used for rapid prototyping as well as system debugging.

Athena IV offers two methods for mass storage:

  • An M.2 2230 size SATA socket is provided for onboard mass storage. Modules up to 128GB are available. This is the most common choice.

  • A standard 7-pin SATA connector is available for connecting a standard 2.5″ or other form factor hard drive. This connector can be used when higher capacity storage is needed. Diamond offers accessory board ACC-HDDMOUNT which allows a 2.5″ drive to be mounted on the PC/104 stack.

PC/104 expansion
Athena IV uses the rugged and widely supported PC/104 ISA bus for I/O expansion. Choose from hundreds of I/O modules from vendors all over the world, including our own extensive selection. Although the board has both top side and bottom side PC/104 connectors, bottom side mounting of I/O modules is preferred to avoid blocking airflow over the top-side heat sink on Athena.

Development Kit
Development kits are available to support quick project startup. Each kit includes the Athena SBC, a cable kit, and a programmed 64GB flashdisk with your choice of Windows 10 or Linux operating system, ready to run. Simply plug in the flashdisk, attach the cables, add your keyboard, mouse, and display, and you’re ready to boot into a fully functional OS. Configuration files and instructions are provided to rebuild the OS with your application. The Linux kit includes all the tools needed to rebuild the OS. The Windows 10 kit includes a runtime license.

Cable Kit
Athena IV is designed to use most of the same cables as previous generations of Athena, along with upgrades for the latest technology. New with Athena IV is a second gigabit Ethernet port which is backwards compatible with the original board’s 10/100 connector along with a USB 3.0 cable.

Cables are normally sold as complete kits. Individual cables may be available in some cases or may be ordered with minimum order quantities; contact us for details.

Product Configurations
Athena IV is available with a COM featuring the «Bay Trail» E3845 quad core 1.91GHz CPU with 4GB soldered RAM. Contact us for information about other processor options. The board is available both with and without the integrated data acquisition circuit.

Technical specifications
Processor Bay Trail E3845 quad core 1.91GHz CPU
RAM 4GB RAM soldered on COM
Interfaces 2x Gigabit Ethernet
1x VGA port
1x Single-channel 24-bit LVDS
1x USB 3.0 port
4x USB 2.0 ports
4x RS-232/422/485 serial ports with dual software/jumper configuration control
7-pin SATA connector plus M.2 2230 socket
Audio HDA audio (ALC262)
Input voltage 5VDC
RTC battery On-board RTC backup battery with external battery connector
Operating systems Windows 10 and Ubuntu Linux OS support
Dimensions: 4.175 x 4.475" (106 x 114mm)

Data acquisition subsystem features

Inputs 16 single-ended / 8 differential analog inputs
A/D resolution 16-bit A/D resolution
Analog inputs Unipolar and bipolar
Input configuration Single-ended and differential input configuration
Input ranges Programmable gain 1/2/4/8 providing input ranges +/-10V / 0-10V down to +/- 1.25V / 0-1.25V
Sample rate 150KHz maximum A/D sample rate, single-channel and multi-channel mode
A/D triggering Internal clock / external clock / software A/D triggering
A/D operation Single-channel and multi-channel-scan A/D operation
FIFO Interrupts with FIFO to support reliable high-speed sampling
Analog outputs 4x 12-bit single-ended analog outputs
Output ranges +/-10V, +/-5V, 0-10V and 0-5V output ranges
Autocalibration Autocalibration with Universal Driver software maintains accuracy over time and temperature
Digital inputs 24 digital I/O, 3.3V logic / 5V tolerant inputs
Counter/timers 2 programmable counter/timers for A/D timing and general counting purposes

Environmental and physical specifications

Operating Temperature -40°C to +85°C (-40°F to +185°F) (fanless)
Model Description
ATH4-E3845-4GA Athena IV SBC, E3845 1.91GHz CPU, 4GB RAM, With DAQ
ATH4-E3845-4GN Athena IV SBC, E3845 1.91GHz CPU, 4GB RAM, No DAQ
CK-ATH4-01 Cable Kit, Athena IV SBC
DK‑ATH4‑E3845A‑WE1064 Development Kit, Athena IV SBC, E3845 CPU, With DAQ, Windows 10 64-Bit BSP
DK-ATH4-E3845A-LNX64 Development Kit, Athena IV SBC, E3845 CPU, With DAQ, Linux 64-Bit BSP
SDK‑ATH4‑E3845A‑WE1064 Software Development Kit, Athena IV SBC, Windows 10 64-bit OS
SDK-ATH4-E3845A-LNX64 Software Development Kit, Athena IV SBC, Linux 64-bit OS
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