New Family of Ethernet Switches Provides the Industry’s Most Complete Time Sensitive Networking Feature Set                                            

Microchip’s SparX-5i family of Ethernet switches enables increased connectivity and network optimization while lowering costs for industrial automation networks   

New Delhi, February 4, 2021 – With the support of Time Sensitive Networking (TSN), Ethernet is eliminating the need for separate Information Technology (IT) and Operational Technology (OT) networks, providing a more ubiquitous approach to synchronization and precision timing for today’s industrial automation systems. However, to accomplish this, the use of multi-chip proprietary solutions has often been required, increasing both complexity and costs for developers. To help eliminate reliance on such sole-sourced, expensive and proprietary solutions for deterministic communications, Microchip Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MCHP) today announced its SparX-5i family of Ethernet switches – a single-chip, IEEE standards-based solution that offers the industry’s most complete TSN feature set. 

The SparX-5i family supports the key TSN IEEE standards needed for a complete real-time communication solution. These include IEEE 1588v2 and IEEE 802.1AS-REV profile for Time Synchronization, IEEE 802.1Qbv for Traffic Shaping, IEEE 802.1Qbu/802.3br for Delay Reduction, IEEE 802.1Qci for Stream Policing and IEEE 802.1CB for Seamless Redundancy. Offering these standards in a single chip guarantees end-to-end transmission of high-priority traffic with extremely low latency. In addition, the family supports standard L2/L3 Ethernet with up to 200G of bandwidth, incorporating 100M, 1G, 2.5G, 5G, 10G and 25 GbE interfaces for the most flexible connectivity solution available in the market.

“With Microchip’s SparX-5i family of Ethernet switches, we’re providing our customers with a simplified pathway to a TSN compatible infrastructure, helping them achieve real-time data communication across their entire network,” said Charles Forni, vice president of Microchip’s USB and networking business unit. “The SparX-5i family is the first Microchip device in a line of TSN switch developments that will address all levels of the industrial automation network, from the field bus to the factory backbone.”

In addition to the SparX-5i family, Microchip also provides the SparX-5 family of enterprise Ethernet switches supporting standard L2/L3 Ethernet with up to 200G of bandwidth, incorporating 100M, 1G, 2.5G, 5G, 10G and 25 GbE interfaces.

Development Tools 

The VSC6817SDK IStaX Linux Application Software is a turnkey industrial Ethernet switch software solution designed to support Microchip’s managed Ethernet switch devices. The software uses the latest LinuxÒ operating system for optimal performance and cost-effective implementation. It’s highly integrated with advanced L2+ switch features, such as QCLs and ACLs, and includes support for key TSN features.

In addition, Microchip offers an Ethernet Switch and PHY Application Programming Interface (VSC6803API) – MESA – providing a comprehensive, user-friendly function library that is operating-system independent. Evaluation boards and reference designs are also available upon request.

Availability 

SparX-5i and SparX-5 switches are available in volume production. For additional information or to purchase products mentioned here, contact a Microchip sales representative, authorized worldwide distributor or visit Microchip’s website. To purchase silicon products mentioned here visit Microchip’s purchasing portal.

 


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