IEEE NPSS NEWS - CANPS Student Paper Award recipient Dominic Gaisbauer
On The Way to a Unified Communication Framework
Modern data-acquisition systems in particle physics put high demands on data throughput and tight constraints on trigger accuracy and timing resolution. Several CERN experiments, e.g., ATLAS, COMPASS, CMS, or LHCb  implement their DAQ systems with separate high-speed links for data, trigger distribution and control. The underlying topology of separate links connecting the front-end to the FPGA stages and the computer farms at the back-end is the same. This split topology already raises the question why there is no unified communication interface that can handle data, trigger, and control via a single link. Such a channel would reduce the amount of separate links, simplify the DAQ topology, reduce the number of error sources, and reduce development time.