Heitec Promo 5e7cc8dcee66f

Thoroughly Modular Millie

March 26, 2020
Heitec’s HeiSys modular platform lets designers populate a system using a range of third-party modules.

The title is a play on the movie musical Thoroughly Modern Millie. Heitec’s HeiSys modular system (Fig. 1) doesn’t have much in common with the madcap movie, but the name Millie also means strength and determination. The modular system espouses some of that with a host of sockets that allow a developer to incorporate a range of compute, interface, and wireless technologies without creating a custom motherboard to resorting to a slot- or stack-based solution.

The HeiSys supports a COM Express Type 6 processor as well as a SMARC card that can include an FPGA, providing even more peripheral and interface flexibility (Fig. 2). Dozens of vendors and cards are able to fill these slots as well as others on this modular platform.

On-board storage can be delivered via SATA SSD or NVMe M.2 modules. This provides plenty of storage options sufficient for most applications. Another shorter M.2 socket can be used for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support.

Four Mini-PCI Express sockets are found on the bottom of the board along with the M.2 sockets. These are typically used for additional wireless communication support. Industrial modules are available for LTE, 5G, UMTS, GSM, LPWA, and GPS/GLONASS. Additional Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support can also be added here. SIM card sockets are paired with each module. The HeiSys platform targets industrial, data-communication, and railway applications.

Putting the more expensive components on modules drives down the cost of the carrier board. It also means there’s little overhead if only a few of the sockets are required for an application. The system can be housed in a rugged, conduction-cooled case with a customizable back panel. The power system is also contained within the case.

About the Author

William G. Wong | Senior Content Director - Electronic Design and Microwaves & RF

I am Editor of Electronic Design focusing on embedded, software, and systems. As Senior Content Director, I also manage Microwaves & RF and I work with a great team of editors to provide engineers, programmers, developers and technical managers with interesting and useful articles and videos on a regular basis. Check out our free newsletters to see the latest content.

You can send press releases for new products for possible coverage on the website. I am also interested in receiving contributed articles for publishing on our website. Use our template and send to me along with a signed release form. 

Check out my blog, AltEmbedded on Electronic Design, as well as his latest articles on this site that are listed below. 

You can visit my social media via these links:

I earned a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology and a Masters in Computer Science from Rutgers University. I still do a bit of programming using everything from C and C++ to Rust and Ada/SPARK. I do a bit of PHP programming for Drupal websites. I have posted a few Drupal modules.  

I still get a hand on software and electronic hardware. Some of this can be found on our Kit Close-Up video series. You can also see me on many of our TechXchange Talk videos. I am interested in a range of projects from robotics to artificial intelligence. 

Sponsored Recommendations


To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Electronic Design, create an account today!