Website dedicated to the new small form factor (SFF) module goes live Website dedicated to the new small form factor (SFF) module goes live

Latest specification and design guidelines for COM Express™ compatible modules for ultra mobile computer devices ready for download

Eching, Germany, June 30, 2008 – The credit card sized nanoETXexpress Computer-on-Module form factor (84 mm x 55 mm) for developing ultra mobile mini-devices based on x86 processors in 45nm technology now has its own dedicated website. The specification and carrier board design guidelines can be downloaded at

The new dedicated website for the nanoETXexpress form factor, which has been designed as the logical extension to the COM Express™ specification, has the following objectives:
• Update the PICMG® COM Express™ specification to better address the needs of ultra mobile, handheld applications
• Key information portal providing all relevant information on the new, open COM Express™ COM.0 Type 1 compatible Computer-on-Module standard – nanoETXexpress.
• As a manufacturer-independent website, it will incorporate all nanoETXexpress solutions from all manufacturers, thereby underlining the openness of the new form factor. It will also be the main source for documentation on the evolution of the specification. Developers can receive all the latest updates by subscribing to the news alert system that will be implemented soon.
• Developers of mobile x86 devices are highly recommended to review the information provided on this site as a means of assisting them with the new challenges they face in creating systems. The website offers valuable information on, for example, handling more concentrated heat sources, building SMART Battery Management Systems and integrating various displays with standard software when the screens only offer, for example, 800 x 400 pixels. The nanoETXexpress knowledge base (currently in development) will answer these questions and more.

By utilizing the latest web technologies, nanoETXexpress experts will be able to quickly respond to customers’ questions with precise answers that offer long-term solutions. By providing a knowledge base containing all the relevant information required for designing mobile devices with COMs, hardware and software developers will have a real-time online information resource as well as a community of nanoETXexpress users and designers.

In addition to online content, Kontron (the founding member of the COM-IG and inventor of the nanoETXexpress form factor) also offers comprehensive seminars and company-specific training on developing carrier boards. This program is now being expanded to address the needs of developers of mobile handheld devices.

About nanoETXexpress
nanoETXexpress Computer-on-Module are 100 percent compatible with the COM Express™ COM.0 Type 1 with respect to the pin definition and connectors’ physical positioning on the module. Therefore, the various sizes of COM Express™ compatible Computer-on-Modules (basic, extended, micro, nano) are interchangeable and carrier board designs are reusable. This enables developers to draw upon their existing experience with COM Express™ modules. Only the dimensions are reduced to a minimum in the nanoETXexpress form factor. In designing this “nano” COM Express™ form factor, Kontron was able to draw upon its experience from developing DIMM-PC (ISA) and X-board (PCI) designs as well as the Intel® processor roadmap to ensure the highest degree of design security. Additionally, Kontron conducted extensive research among ultra mobile designers to best understand their performance, integrated features, and size needs.

The nanoETXexpress specification defines all of the long-term relevant interfaces such as Gigabit Ethernet, SATA, USB and PCI Express (including PCIe Gen 2) as well as audio and graphics. Memory and Flash are also already on board – as they are with DIMM-PC and X-board. Compared with card edge connectors, the nanoETXexpress connector is significantly more future proof. Since it has less electronic attenuation, it enables longer pathways on the carrier board. This is important since green IT trends will reduce the possible pathway length in the long term. In addition, it offers greater shock and vibration resistance as well as a clear advantage when it comes to EMC. This is also important since the demands on shielding are increasing due to factors such as second generation PCIe, for example, that doubles the wire speed and thereby the frequency, resulting in the need for greater shielding. Therefore, it makes the most sense to use this Computer-on-Module design that clearly offers the longest lifecycle.

Download the specification:

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