Natioanal Instrumnents named PXI a rugged PC-based platform for measurement and automation systems.
As defined by the PXI Hardware Specification, all PXI chassis contain a system controller slot located in the leftmost slot of the chassis (slot 1).
Controller options include remote control from a standard desktop PC or a high-performance embedded control with either a Microsoft operating system (such as Windows 2000/XP/7) or a Real-Time operating system (such as LabVIEW Real-Time).
NI PXI System Controllers
On the PXI platform, NI offers 3 options for interfacing with CPU:embedded controller, remote controller or rack-mount controller.
Embedded controllers bring the processor physically into the PXI chassis, creating a complete system. These controllers run both standard (Windows, Linux) and real-time operating systems and feature integrated peripherals like ethernet, USB and serial ports.
With PXI remote controllers, you can control PXI systems with standard desktop and laptop PCs. The links are high-throughput and software-transparent. PC control of PXI enables use the latest desktops, servers, and workstations for applications that require the highest-performance processor, high-speed or long-duration streaming to disk, etc. Fiber-optic cabling options are available for long distances (up to 200 m) and electric isolation. PXI remote controllers can also be used to build multichassis PXI systems.
Rack-mount controllers are a high-performance computing option in a convenient 1U form factor. Additionally, these controllers support RAID configurations, for applications demanding high speed data streaming to disk.
Embedded PXI Chassis types
The chassis provides the rugged and modular packaging for the system. Chassis, ranging in size from 4-slots to 26-slots, are available for all different types of applications – portable, benchtop, and rack mount. Chassis are available with all 3U slots, all 6U slots, or a combination of 3U and 6U slots, and chassis are also available with special features such as DC power supplies and integrated signal conditioning.
The PXI Express Backplane
The chassis contains the high-performance PXI backplane, which includes the PCI bus and timing and triggering buses. These timing and triggering buses enable users to develop systems for applications requiring precise synchronization. PXI is built on the modular and scalable CompactPCI specification and the high-speed PCI bus architecture.
Modular PC-Based Architecture Provides Flexible Functionality. PXI provides a platform with a breadth of functionality available, including analog and digital I/O, high-speed instrumentation, vision, motion, and various interfaces. More than 1,500 PXI Products from More than 70 Vendors.