PICMG Prepares COM-HPC for Ratification

15 DECEMBER 2020

New Open Specification for High Performance Compute Modules – Preview Available Now

PICMG, a leading consortium for the development of open embedded computing specifications, announces that COM-HPC has entered member review. The member review phase occurs after the technical subcommittee approves the specification and acts as a final review by all PICMG members in good standing. Reaching this approval step is a milestone in ensuring ratification will be reached in early 2021. The base specification will complement a Platform Management Interface Specification, COM-HPC EEEP, and Carrier Board Design Guide.

In conjunction with the review cycle, PICMG has published a preview specification. The abridged specification is available for public download and distribution.

COM-HPC is the soon-to-be-released PICMG standard for high-performance Computer-on-Modules (COMs). COM-HPC defines five module sizes to deliver edge server performance for small, rugged data centers. The new specification will complement COM Express, which will continue to play a crucial role in the COM marketplace for many years.

PICMG developed this specification to address emerging requirements in the embedded and edge computing market. Trends, including the substantial data growth and processing requirements of broadband and 5G as well as edge analytic including AI and situational awareness applications. IoT devices, sensors, and actuators are producing tremendous amounts of data that require preprocessing at the edge for improved data processing efficiency and, end to end security. Autonomous vehicles, smart factories, smart retail, medical robotics are among many applications that will benefit from massively increased edge server and edge client class processors processor modules or COMs being available in standard modules that existing standards cannot meet.

“The working group of 26 industry-leading companies has done an excellent job, said Christian Eder, Chairman COM-HPC Technical Committee. A big thank you to the team for their collective development of this specification over a five-year investment of time and resources. The importance of the COM-HPC specification is very clear, as is our commitment to a healthy market ecosystem. We are now well prepared to address current and future requirements over multiple industries”.

For more information about the COM-HPC specification and to access its preview document, please visit PICMG’s website https://www.picmg.org/com-hpc-overview/ .


  • Two 400-pin BGA mount high-performance connectors
  • System Management Interface
  • Not limited to x86 processors
  • Provides for the use of RISC processors, FPGAs and GPGPUs
  • COM-HPC Client Modules
    • Up to 48 + 1 PCI Express Gen4/5 lanes
    • Up to 4x USB4
    • Up to 4x video interfaces
    • Up to 2x 25 Gb Ethernet interfaces
    • Module sizes:
      • Size A: 95 x 120 mm
      • Size B: 120 x 120 mm
      • Size C: 160 x 120 mm
    • COM-HPC Server Modules
      • Up to 64 + 1 PCI Express Gen4/5 lanes
      • Up to 2x USB4
      • Up to 4 graphic interfaces / headless
      • Up to 8x 25 Gb Ethernet interfaces
      • Module sizes:
        • Size D: 160 x 160 mm
        • Size E: 200 x 160 mm

Members of the PICMG COM-HPC committee include: University of Bielefeld, ADLINK, Advantech, Amphenol, AMI, congatec, Elma Electronic, ept, Fastwel, GE Automation, HEITEC, ICC Intelligent Platforms, Intel, Kontron, MEN, MSC Technologies, N.A.T., nVent, Samtec, SECO, Supermicro, TE Connectivity, Trenz Electronic, and VersaLogic. ADLINK, congatec and Kontron are the committee sponsors. Christian Eder, marketing director of congatec, is the chairman of the COM-HPC committee. He was previously a draft editor of the current COM Express standard. Stefan Milnor from Kontron and Dylan Lang from Samtec support Christian Eder in their respective functions as editor and secretary of the PICMG COM-HPC committee.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • We use your personal data ONLY to respond to your comments/requests.
  • To receive responses that are appropriate to your requests, we may transfer your email address and your name to the author of the article.
  • For more information on our Privacy Policy and Personal Data Processing, please visit the page: Privacy Policy (GDPR) & Cookies.
  • If you have any questions or concerns regarding the way we process your personal data, you can contact our Data Protection Officer at: gdpr@esp2000.ro
  • Subscribe to our magazine newsletter