ROACH and ROACH2 Systems

(ROACH - Reconfigurable Open Architecture Computing Hardware)

A major and unique product offering from Digicom is its ROACH and ROACH2 (Reconfigurable Open Architecture Computing Hardware) systems that were developed with major universities and research labs throughout the world.

The ROACH systems take the baseband data from the most powerful radio telescopes, changes it from analog to digital, and applies sophisticated digital signal processing filtering techniques to derive information about our universe. These systems are customized for each application as some applications require downloading a tremendous amount of data quickly, while others want to selectively download the data. Intricate modules and box-build projects, such as the ROACH system, IADC (analog to digital conversion boards), and IBoB (interconnect break-out boards), are totally turnkey.

ROACH is a Virtex5-based upgrade to current CASPER hardware. It merges aspects from the iBOB and BEE2 platforms into a single board. The CX4/XAUI/10GbE interfaces of both are kept, while combining the Z-DOK daughter board interface of the iBoB with the high bandwitdth/capacity DRAM memory and standalone usage model of the BEE2. ROACH is a single-FPGA board, dispensing with the on-board inter-FPGA links in favor of 10GbE interfaces for all cross-FPGA communications.

  • XILINX Virtex 5 SX95T or LX110T
  • 4x 10 Gb Ethernet Ports
  • DDR2 667 MHz memory
  • Standard I U case and power supplies
  • Now Available

ROACH-2 was designed as the sequel to ROACH-1 using the new Xilinx Virtex-6 series of FPGAs. It maintains all the aspects that made ROACH-1 a success, but increases the overall performance in terms of processing power, IO throughput and memory bandwidth. It uses the same PowerPC 440EPx present on the ROACH-1 but adds a unified JTAG interface provided through an FTDI FT4232H IC.

CASPER & ROACH Systems for AstronomyNew White Paper: Digicom Electronics and CASPER'S Technology Open Endless Possibilities for Astronomy and Aerospace Innovation and Collaboration. Today, CASPER technology powers over 45 scientific instruments worldwide. A significant contribution to these innovations comes from Digicom Electronics. Read it here