LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation

[LXI Description] [LXI Connector] [LXI Pin-Out]
[LXI Cable Assemblies] [LXI Standards Links] [LXI Equipment]

LXI Description

LXI Introduction:
LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation [LXI], is basically an up-graded approach to controlling lab equipment, normally reserved for the IEEE488 interface. LXI uses Ethernet as the interconnect topology. The LXI interface is a VXI like system without a slot 0 controller and allows devices to interconnect via Ethernet instead of an IEEE-488 cable. Modules are self-contained, with their own power supply, processor, and LAN connections with no card cage, but they may be rack-mounted. The local area network is the back-bone. Similar to VXI and PXI the specification also defines EMI/RFI requirements.

The LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation [LXI] specification is a new standard, released in 2005. LXI will tend to reduce the cost of modular instruments by eliminating the requirement of the slot 0 controller and increase the inter-modular communication speed by using Ethernet instead of the IEEE-488 bus. Note that Ethernet began appearing on electronic equipment years before the LXI spec was released. As the more sophisticated gear adapted a windows operating system for control, standard PC interfaces followed. LXI is the attempt to define how Ethernet is adapted, both for high-end gear and smaller test equipment which would not have an operating system.

LXI is reported to be the LAN-based successor to GPIB [IEEE488].
LXI units may be non-rack mounted devices, full width mounted devices or half-width mounted devices. Unit height may be 1RU [43.69mm], 2RU [88.14mm], 3RU [132.59mm], or 4RU [177.04mm], with a body width of 215.9mm. However units may also be 1U to 4U as well.
LXI units must be self cooling, utilizing their own fans when required.

The LXI interface has also begun to replace the IEEE-488 interface on bench-top Test Equipment.

LXI Consortium

LXI Connector Manufacturers

LXI modules are inter-connected via Ethernet. Refer to the main Ethernet for a listing of connector manufacturers.
The recommended connector type is an RJ-45 connector.
However; M12 connectors may be used in place of the RJ-45 style connector.
M12 style connectors offer protection against the environment.

LXI Bus Pin-Out Descriptions

Physical Ethernet connections are compliant with IEEE 802.3 [Ethernet].

LXI Trigger Bus Pin Assignments
Pin Signal Pin Signal
1 +3.3v 2 GND
3 CH1+ 4 CH1-
5 GND 6 CH3+
7 CH3- 8 GND
9 CH5+ 10 CH5-
11 Reserved 12 CH7+
13 CH7- 14 CH0+
15 CH0- 16 Reserved
17 CH2+ 18 CH2-
19 GND 20 CH4+
21 CH4- 22 GND
23 CH6+ 24 CH6-
Shell Shell 25 Reserved

Note the standard calls the channels LXI1p or LXI1n and does not use the term CH.
The LXI Trigger Bus driver consists of two M-LVDS drivers with the outputs connected in parallel

{LXI Index}

LXI On-Line Standards, Specifications Information

The LXI standard was released in September 2005.
LXI Standard; Revision 1.0
LXI Standard Revision 1.4 (Released May 18, 2011)
LXI Standard Revision 1.3 (Released October 30, 2008)
LXI Standard Revision 1.2 (Released October 3, 2007)
LXI Standard Revision 1.1 (Released August 28, 2006)
LXI Trigger Bus Cable and Terminator Specifications Revision 1.1 (Released August 28, 2006)
LXI Trigger Bus Cable and Terminator Specifications Revision 2.0 (Released May 18, 2011)
IVI-3.15: IviLxiSync Specification (Released November 13, 2006)

{LXI Bus Index}

LXI Cable Assemblies

LXI uses EIA-568 CAT-5 connections. Refer to the Ethernet page for additional links.

{LXI WTB 20m Cable Assembly, also 0.5m, 1m, 2m, 3m, 5m, and 10m Cable Assemblies}

{Back to LXI top}

LXI Product Manufacturers

Agilent Technologies
{Function/Arbitrary Waveform Generator, Digital Multimeters, Signal Generators, LXI class A, LXI Switch and Control Instruments}

C&H Technologies, Inc.
{LXI Ethernet Carrier for M-Modules}

{LXI High Voltage Matrix 2-pole 200x2, LXI Low Thermal EMF Matrix 1-pole 42x33,
LXI Microwave Matrix, 10GHz, Single 8x4, LXI WTB Probe, Terminated, LXI WTB 20m Cable Assembly}

VTI Instruments
{Data Acquisition and Signal Conditioning, Signal Switching and I/O}

LXI Based Products
In a few years most gear should contain the LXI interface.
When there is more gear with an LXI based interface the equipment will be moved to the Test Equipment pages.
However in the mean time as there so few LXI related products this page will stay.
It's already been out for 5 years [2005 - 2010], not sure why LXI is taking so long to be adapted.
Of course the simple answer is that most people don't care if the gear has an Ethernet connection.

{Back to LXI top}

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Modified 6/13/15
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