Edge AI Video Analytics Solution Adopts PICMG Box PC Standard

April 3, 2023
A novel edge AI video analytics platform built by Elma Electronic, Hailo, and Isarsoft challenges how business intelligence is addressed in the transportation industry.

Check out more of our embedded world 2023 coverage. This video is also part of the TechXchange: AI on the Edge.

A novel edge AI video analytics solution developed by Elma Electronic, Hailo, and Isarsoft challenges how business intelligence is conducted in the transportation industry. Examples of the solution were exhibited at embedded world 2023, such as the one shown in the video above. Based on the open modular hardware standard for scalable industrial box PCs, the system can be used in vehicles and train stations to provide operators with accurate real-time insights from video cameras.

PICMG released a draft for a new form-factor specification called  ModBlox7, a processor-agnostic, COTS-centric architecture for building industrial box PCs while remaining extensible and modifiable. The goal is to reduce cost and accelerate time-to-market for transportation, automation, aerospace, and defense, and others looking to extend computing intelligence into harsh, demanding environments.

Presented as the first such industrial box PC standard, the draft ModBlox7 specification outlines three block types: a CPU unit, a power-supply unit, and I/O unit. Each has a fixed height, width, and depth, as well as space for the requisite PCBs and connectors, with a conduction-cooling element. The blocks can be connected in standard or N+1 redundant configurations over standard internal PCI Express or USB interfaces to create systems consisting of up to 12 blocks.

Boxes can be wall-mounted, snapped onto a DIN rail, or integrated into a 19-in. subrack, with a fixed height and depth, and a variable width (in multiples of 7HP) up to 84HP. The modular Box PC designs promise to be robust, passive conductive-cooled, and ready for demanding applications.

The initial specification describes the housing mechanics, the modular functional units, and the electrical interconnection of the units. It will guarantee interoperability of units while combining the advantages of modular systems and highly integrated Box PC solutions.

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