Cardstac is a modular circuit specification that you are free to incorporate into your own educational or commercial projects. Cardstac is a specification for small, stack-able test and evaluation modules. These modules can be connected (stacked) as "building blocks" to form electronic systems with processing and IO capability. Cardstac modules are primarily intended for electrical educators, students, and designers as a vehicle for quickly testing and prototyping electronic devices and circuits. Manufacturers can also utilize the modules to reduce design and debug effort for low volume or short lead-time products, and provide flexibility in product implementation.

Cardstac modules can be used for:

  • Evaluation of IC devices and new circuits.
  • Testing of digital IP (intellectual property) and ASIC prototyping.
  • Design cycle reduction (through replication of module design and
    documentation into new designs).
  • Short lead-time products.

Cardstac Summary Information:

Card Size: A credit card sized card provides ample space for a minimal design. Half size cards (60 pin) are also defined.

Pin Inter-connect: Simple 0.1 inch pitch pin headers are utilized in 256, 128, and 60 pin counts. Provide common digital interfaces in standardized pin locations. Pin mapping symmetry and "pass thru" pin headers allow for module stacking and rotation. Carrier cards can also be utilized to provide pin inter-connect.

Digital interfaces: A standard size card (128 pin) provides a sixteen bit peripheral bus, a sixteen bit synchronous FIFO bus, and multiple serial ports/interrupts (SPI, I2C, UART). A half size card (60 pin) provides an eight bit peripheral bus, and multiple serial ports/interrupts.

Card Power: +3.3V and up to two auxiliary power rails (VAUX0_+12V, VAUX1) are provided . A stack of cards is limited to 8 Amperes for the +3.3V power rail (if input using the pin headers only).

Cardstac Resources:

Specification Rel. 2.13 10-06-2010
(708 KB)
Standard pin functions spreadsheet
Rel. 2.1 (38 KB)
Expanded pin functions spreadsheet
Rel. 2.1 (35 KB)
Cardstac Connectors

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