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Module and SBC tap LS1028A for 5x Time-Sensitive Networking GbE ports

May 6, 2019 — by Eric Brown 1,799 views

MicroSys is sampling a new “miriac” module and SBC that run Linux on NXP’s Cortex-A72 based LS1028A with 5x TSN-ready GbE ports and support for up to 2x 10GbE SerDes lanes.

Germany-based MicroSys Electronics has begun limited sampling of a miriac MPX-LS1028A compute module and a sandwich-style miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN SBC that run Linux or the real-time Microware OS‐9 distro on NXP’s QorIQ Layerscape LS1028A SoC. The miriac boards follow only one other module using the single- or dual Cortex-A72 based LS1028A: Kontron’s SMARC-sAL28, which powers its KBox A-230-LS embedded computer.

miriac MPX-LS1028A (left) and miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN
(click images to enlarge)

The LS1028A, which clocks its one or two -A72 cores at up to 1.3GHz, features support for the real-time IEEE 802.1 Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN), which offers guaranteed latency and Quality of Service (QoS) with time synchronization. TSN Ethernet is being promoted as an alternative to more expensive, proprietary fieldbus technologies.

The LS1028A is the only QorIQ SoC with a 3D GPU, although MicroSys lets you swap it out for a headless LS1017 or LS1027 model “for cost saving.” Crypto engines and a trust architecture are also built in.


The standard Linux BSP uses Yocto Project code. The optional Microware OS-9 distribution promised in the third quarter is the heir to the venerable OS-9 RTOS dating back to 1979. Microware, a collaboration between MicroSys, Freestation, and RTSI, has extended the PowerPC-compatible RTOS to support Arm-based QorIQ processors.

MicroSys, which was formerly called Micro/sys, has dedicated itself to NXP development. It has offered Linux- and Microware OS-9 supported miriac modules and sandwich-style SBCs for years. The QorIQ-focused miriac product line ranges from Arm products based on NXP’s quad-core, Cortex-A53 based LS1043A, quad-core -A72 LS1046A, and octa-core LS2088A, as well as NXP’s old PowerPC based QorIQ SoCs such as the T1042A.

miriac MPX-LS1028A

The miriac MPX-LS1028A module was announced in late January, but came to our attention via a recent post on CNXSoft. It’s sampling now, with general availability by July 1.

miriac MPX-LS1028A block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

No dimensions were listed for the module, which uses an MXM 2.0 edge connector. The module provides up to 4GB DDR4-1600, including ECC, as well as up to 256MB NOR and up to 4GB NAND flash.

The miriac MPX-LS1028A harnesses the LS1028A’s considerable networking capabilities by offering support for up to 5x TSN-capable GbE ports. You can also configure 4x SerDes (Serializer/Deserializer) lanes for up to dual 10Gbps ports or other interfaces, configurable in four options:

  • 2x PCIe 3.0 (2x x1 or 1x x2)
  • 1x SATA 3.0
  • Up to 1x QSGMII and up to 1x SGMII
  • Up to 1x 10G-QXGMII and 1x 10G-SXGMII

I/O expressed via the MXM 2.0 connector include 2x USB 3.0 host and USB 2.0 OTG, 2x UART, 2x CAN FD, 2x SPI, and 2x eSDHC, plus up to 6x SAI (audio) and up to 8x I2C. You also get single JTAG and RGMII, as well as additional GPIOs. There’s support for a DisplayPort or eDP interface, as well as an RTC and a temperature sensor. No operating range was listed for the 5V module or the SBC.

miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN

The 100 x 60mm miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN expands upon the miriac MPX-LS1028A module with 8GB eMMC and a microSD slot. Networking features include 5x TSN-ready Gigabit Ethernet ports and a sixth standard GbE, all with Power-over-Ethernet support.

miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

The SBC is further equipped with a pair of USB 3.0 ports, a DisplayPort, dual mini-PCIe slots, a mikroBus interface, and more. The board has a wide-range 9-24V input.

Specifications listed for the miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN include:

  • Processor — (miriac MPX-LS1028A module) — NXP QorIQ Layerscape LS1028A (1x or 2x -A72 @ up to 1.3Gbps); 3D graphics GPU or optional headless models; crypto and trust
  • Memory/storage:
    • Up to 4GB DDR4-1600, including ECC (via MPX-LS1028A)
    • Up to 256MB NOR (via MPX-LS1028A)
    • Up to 4GB NAND (via MPX-LS1028A)
    • 8GB eMMC (bootable)
    • MicroSD slot (bootable)
    • mSATA via mini-PCIe
  • Networking:
    • 5x TSN GbE ports
    • 1x standard GbE port
    • PoE (IEEE 1588) support
    • Up to 2x 10GbE potentially available via module’s SerDes support
  • Other I/O:
    • DisplayPort
    • 2x USB 3.0 ports
    • Micro-USB 2.0 console interface
    • 2x CAN-FD
    • 2x JTAG
    • Fan connector
  • Expansion:
    • 2x mini-PCIe slots (1x with mSATA support)
    • MikroBus slot
  • Other features — RTC with battery; watchdog, LEDs, reset and boot switches
  • Power — 9-24V DC
  • Dimensions — 100 x 60mm
  • Operating system — Linux BSP (Yocto); Microware OS-9 (Q3); others available upon request

Further information

The miriac MPX-LS1028A module and miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN SBC are in early sampling, with greater availability due by the end of the quarter. No pricing was disclosed. More information may be found in MicroSys’ miriac MPX-LS1028A announcement, as well as the miriac MPX-LS1028A and miriac SBC-LS1028A-TSN product pages.


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