Our Human Interface Data Acquisition System (HIDAS) is a low-cost, flexible, data acquisition system for connecting physical switches, dials, potentiometers, encoders, lamps, displays, gauges, and other custom devices to a PC or workstation via a Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) bus interface controller.

HIDAS was developed for applications like flight simulators where a human is in the loop controlling or viewing the connected devices. HIDAS takes advantage of the relatively slow speed of human interaction in its design and component selection to keep costs down and flexibility high. HIDAS uses Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) technology, making it quickly adaptable for custom interfaces.


HIDAS creates a network of PCI bus Host Interface Controller(s), each wired to one or more Node board via unshielded, twisted-pair cabling.  Node boards are, in turn, wired to physical components.


Node boards can be hundreds of feed apart from each other and from the controller.  A HIDAS system is cost-effective for environments with as few as 10 devices up to thousands or more.


The associated Linux® HIDAS interface software provides calibration, diagnostics, engineering unit conversion, and easy-to-use test and checkout of complex I/O.  This separates the concerns of the physical hardware from the control and algorithms o the application code.

The HIDAS™ consists of 1 to 4 PCI Host Interface Controller (HIC) boards that are mounted in a Linux®-based PC. A HIC connects to up to 128 Node boards via a 2 MBit/sec serial bus using CAT5 UTP cabling.


There are five types of HIDAS Node boards:


  • Transistor-Transistor Logic (TTL) board
  • Display Driver board
  • Analog Input board
  • Analog Output board
  • Custom serial board used for LCD/LED displays and specialty aircraft serial interfaces


Node boards have a Euroboard 3U form factor (100 cm x 160 cm) and are typically mounted in 9-slot HIDAS Backplanes installed in 3U VME/Euroboard racks. Backplanes are passive boards that simplify mounting, data link connections, and power distribution.  Backplane and rack configuration can be custom or can be configured 3 Backplanes across (27 Node boards) to mount in standard 19-inch (48.26 cm) racks.


The HIDAS modular architecture simplifies and standardizes the software interface and the device wiring, thus reducing the time and risk of hardware-software integration.


Note: To download the HIDAS product brochure, click here.




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