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    What is a System-on-Module (SOM)?


    A Guide to NVIDIA Jetson


    What is a System-on-Module (SOM)?

    A System-on-Module (SOM) is a compact embedded board, roughly the size of a credit card, designed to function as a complete system. Each module includes a system on a chip (SoC) —which may include a microprocessor, GPU, or FPGA—along with memory and essential input/output (I/O) interfaces on a single production-ready printed circuit board (PCB). 

    These modules deliver all the critical functionalities of a microcomputer and are designed for seamless integration into larger systems. As flexible core components, SOMs facilitate rapid development across various technological applications, from consumer electronics to industrial automation, making them vital in modern product design.


    Key Features of System-on-Modules

    • Modularity: SOMs offer modular designs that simplify prototyping and upgrades, significantly reducing development time and enhancing product adaptability.
    • Compactness: Their compact form factor is ideal for embedding advanced computing power into space-constrained applications, maximizing efficiency without sacrificing performance.
    • Performance: SOMs, like NVIDIA’s Jetson series, boast powerful processing capabilities, enabling them to handle complex computations and AI tasks efficiently.
    • Connectivity Options: These modules support a broad range of connectivity options, including USB, Ethernet, and WiFi, facilitating seamless integration into diverse network environments and IoT systems.


    Example of SOMs

    The NVIDIA Jetson Orin modules are a standout example of System on Modules (SOMs) designed for advanced AI applications. These modules are built around the powerful NVIDIA Orin SoC, which integrates ARM Cortex CPUs and an NVIDIA Ampere architecture GPU, along with deep learning and vision accelerators. This powerful combination enables the Jetson Orin modules to handle multiple concurrent AI workloads, making them ideal for robotics, autonomous vehicles, and smart city applications. With a variety of models offering different levels of processing power and energy efficiency, the Jetson Orin series can be tailored to meet specific needs, ensuring both flexibility and high performance in demanding environments.
    Learn more about NVIDIA Jetson Orin modules.

    NVIDIA Jetson Orin SOM

    Applications of SOMs

    Common applications of SOMs span advanced robotics, IoT devices, automotive systems, and industrial automation, where they enhance performance and efficiency. For example, in the realm of industrial automation, Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) and Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs) can leverage the power of NVIDIA Jetson Orin modules embedded within industrial computers. These modules provide the necessary computational strength and AI capabilities to handle real-time navigation, obstacle detection, and complex path planning, greatly enhancing the operational efficiency and autonomy of these robots in dynamic industrial environments.


    Industrial Computers with System-on-Modules (SOM)

    C&T's newest collection of Jetson Orin AI Edge Computers leverages the Jetson Orin architecture to introduce a fresh range of durable, fanless industrial AI computers for the edge. The JCO Series marks C&T's initial foray into ARM-based architecture, providing three scalable versions: the entry-level JCO-1000-ORN, the mid-range JCO-3000-ORN, and the high-performance JCO-6000-ORN, each designed for real-time AI computing in tough environments.

    • JCO-6000-ORN Series

      Powered with NVIDIA Jetson AGX Orin modules, JCO-6000-ORN delivers an impressive 275 TOPS of AI performance. It features up to 4x EDGEBoost I/O Modules that support USB3, PoE, and GigE Vision Cameras, alongside 8 Mini-Fakra connectors for GMSL Camera connectivity, making it an ideal choice for advanced AI computing and vision processing tasks.

    • JCO-3000-ORN Series

      The JCO-3000-ORN, offering Jetson Orin Nano or NX versions, delivers 40-100 TOPS of AI performance. It supports up to 4x RJ45 LAN ports and features Out-of-Band (OOB) management, making it ideal for a wide range of AI tasks with its efficient performance and enhanced connectivity.

    • JCO-1000-ORN Series

      The JCO-1000-ORN, an ultra-compact Edge AI computer powered with the Jetson Orin Nano, delivers 20-40 TOPS of AI performance. Featuring rich I/O ports, it’s ideal for efficient, cost-effective solutions in a small form factor.




    1. What is a System on Module (SOM)?
      A System-on-Module (SOM) is a compact embedded board that includes a system on a chip (SoC) —which may include a microprocessor, GPU, or FPGA—along with memory and essential input/output (I/O) interfaces.
    2. What is System on a Chip (SoC)?
      SoC stands for systems-on-chip is an integrated circuit that contains CPU, GPU, RAM, peripherals interfaces, and more that are all configured into a single silicon chip.
    3. What are the examples of SOMs?
      NVIDIA Jetson Series, Intel Atom Compute Modules, Raspberry Pi Compute Modules.

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