PC expansion cards and PC expansion modules are the ideal building blocks for adapting an industrial PC exactly to the specific requirements. In addition to Mini-PCI (mPCI), Mini-PCI express (mPCIe) and M.2 plug-in modules, these also include communication interface cards and plug-in cards for measurement technology, such as fieldbus cards.
PCIe cards in miniature design
The mPCIe form factor with dimensions of only 30 × 50.95 mm was initially mainly used as an extension for WLAN, GSM/UMTS or GPS modules, whereby the 52-pole Mini-PCIe socket is soldered flat on industrial embedded boards, motherboards or slot CPU cards. The Mini-PCIe modules are inserted parallel to the board and locked or screwed down.
Very wide range
In the meantime, the range of mPCIe application modules that allow the expansion of very small and compact systems is very wide. In the beginning there were serial interface modules (RS-232, RS-422, RS-485) with 1,2 or 4 channels, as well as mixed modules with RS-232 and LPT parallel port. In addition, there were analog I/O cards, Firewire, LAN, dual LAN, SATA, SATA with RAID function, USB 2.0/3.0 or digital and analog I/Os. Fieldbus modules such as CAN/CAN-open, Modbus, Profibus or Profinet, Ethercat, CC-Link, Sercos and Powerlink are on the rise. Recently, graphics expansion modules and frame grabber modules are also available.