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Rugged module and dev kit run Linux on octa-core Renesas SoC

Feb 13, 2018 — by Eric Brown 1,199 views

Emtrion’s Linux-friendly “emCON-RZ/G1H” module features an octa-core Renesas RZ/G1H SoC, up to 32GB eMMC, dual CAN interfaces, and extended temperature support, and is available with a carrier board.

Like iWave’s Qseven form factor iW-RainboW-G21M-Q7 computer-on-module, Emtrion’s emCON-RZ/G1H taps the Renesas RZ/G1H SoC (model R8A7742), which combines 4x 1.4GHz Cortex-A15 cores, 4x 780MHz Cortex-A7 cores and a 3D-ready Imagination Technologies PowerVR G6400 GPU clocked at 520MHz. Emtrion usually works with NXP or TI SoCs, and in the past has dabbled in Atmel, as in its circa-2014, ATSAMA5D36 based SBC-SAMA5D36.

emCON-RZ/G1H (left) and as part of dev kit with Avari baseboard
(click images to enlarge)

The emCON-RZ/G1H, which is smaller than the iW-RainboW-G21M-Q7 at 82 x 50 x 10mm, offers a similar, but slightly reduced feature set. The temperature range is limited to 0 to 70°C or optional -20 to 85°C instead of iWave’s -40 to 85°C. It similarly ships with a dev kit, in this case using Emtrion’s Avari baseboard (see farther below).

The emCON-RZ/G1H ships with 1GB or 2GB DDR3L and 4GB to 32GB eMMC storage. The module offers an RTC connector, as well as 10/100 and 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet controllers.


Interfaces expressed via the edge connector include SATA II, PCIe, USB 3.0 host, USB 2.0 host, and USB 2.0 device. Additional I/O includes 5x UART, 8x GPIO, 2x I2C, 2x MMC/SDC, 3x PWM, and 2x SPI. You also get two CAN interfaces instead of one on the iW-RainboW-G21M-Q7. The emCON-RZ/G1H offers 2x LVDS. RGB, and camera interfaces, as well as an SSI audio interface.

emCON-RZ/G1H block diagram (left) and Avari baseboard
(click images to enlarge)

Images are available for Linux (Yocto 2.0.1 and Debian 9.x), QNX 6.6.0, and “Virtualization/Jailhouse 0.8.” However, the module is also said to be compatible with Android, FreeRTOS, Windows 10 IoT, and Windows Embedded (WinCE6.0, WEC7, WEC2013). Customizations for virtualization, security, fast boot, EtherCAT, PROFINET, and CANopen are optional.

Avari carrier and dev kit

emCON-RZ/G1H development kits are available in Linux, Android, and QNX versions. Each kit includes a 150 x 100 x 18mm Avari baseboard that supports -25 to 80°C temperatures, as well as an emCON-RZ/G1H module with pre-installed OS image. You also get a power supply for the 5-volt input and an 800 x 480 capacitive touchscreen that appears to be 7 inches on the diagonal. The screen ships with a Plexiglas mount.

The Avari board provides a microSD slot, SATA port, GbE port, USB 3.0 host port, 2x USB 2.0 host ports, and a mini-USB 2.0 OTG port. A mini-PCIe socket supports full- or half-size cards, and there’s an optional WiFi/Bluetooth module and optional SIM card holder.

Media features include an HDMI port, one or two LVDS interfaces, and an 18-bit RGB interface with touch support that controls the WVGA touchscreen. You also get a 3.5mm audio jack output, dual MIPI-CSI-2 camera interfaces, and an optional Parallel camera link.

Other features include 2x CAN connections, a DB-9 RS232 serial port, and 4x LVTTL serial interfaces, one of which has flow control. There’s also a 30-pin expansion connector with 8x GPIO, 2x SPI, I2C, and reset I/O.

The board is further equipped with a JTAG connector, RTC battery holder, 5V PWM output for fan control, 5V DC jack, and reset, power, wake buttons. DIP switches are available for CPU boot mode control.

Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the emCON-RZ/G1H and its dev kit. More information may be found at Emtrion’s emCON-RZ/G1H product page, which has links to product pages for the Linux, Android, and QNX dev kits. Emtrion will show the boards at Embedded World 2018 (Feb. 27 to Mar. 1) in Nuremberg at hall 4A, stand 101.

(advertise here)

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