As Ive joked in the past, Rittal Corporation is the biggest name in CompactPCIyouve never heard of. While other companies produce much fanfare, Rittal produces much product.
I recently journeyed to Springfield, Ohio, to tour just two of the immense buildings in the Rittal empire, in search of their CompactPCI subrack production line.
Big as it is, Rittal Corporation is just a part of Rittal International, a company founded in Germany in 1961 thats now the worlds leading enclosure manufacturer with offices in over 55 countries. Rittals more than 6,000
products range over industrial enclosures, 19 electronic components, climate control devices, power distribution, data communication, and telecom / outdoor products.
One production line I saw easily had about $3 million worth of equipment. Sheet metal was being fed in one end, and about 200 feet later finished subracks were emerging from the other end. What interested me in particular was the Ripac line, a complete 19 subrack and component packaging system designed to the highest
standards and tolerances. Rittals Ripac cPCI products are built with remarkable precision and attention to detail, which is one reason why I gave a Best of Show Award to Rittals new COMPACT-I System.
The COMPACT-I is a cost / performance efficient cPCI subrack designed for the kind of medium and high-volume production applications found in telecom. Rittal has figured out ways of keeping cPCIs cost from getting too high for example, an all-sheet steel design can be customized for
high volume applications with a restricted set of cPCI features, lowering the cost. Or a sheet metal / extrusion design can be used for an application demanding all cPCI features at a moderate cost.
The COMPACT-I is so flexible it can handle 6U or 9U high boards. You can configure it as a 10U high system with additional slim line horizontal mounted drives above the blowers, a 12U system suitable for 9U front or front/rear mounted boards, a 12U or 13U system with vertical mounted drives above the blower, a
13U system with additional horizontal drives mounted above the blower or a 14U system with enhanced airflow plenum and bottom mounted, hot swappable power supplies.
By blowers I dont mean just ordinary axial / muffin fans that struggle at a static pressure of .3 of water, 80Pa (1 Pascal = .00014510 PSI). Im actually referring to the Rolls Royce of fans, Rittals hot-swappable RiCool blowers that deliver 220 CFM at a static pressure of 1.5 of water, or
400Pa each. Aside from their sheer power that can overcome any form of back pressure, RiCool blowers are perhaps the most intelligent fans youll ever meet, with each capable of failure alarm signals, temperature speed control, locked rotor protection and automatic restart.
Rittal takes compactPCI seriously, which means we all better take it seriously, Rittal cranks out 300 CPCI chassis per month, a figure thats rapidly increasing.
For more, check out Rittals website at