All About In-Vehicle Computers
A computer mounted in a vehicle doesn’t sound like the most obvious place for it, but in reality, it’s an essential part of many industries’ daily functions. For example, mobile surveillance computers provide tracking, information gathering, and monitoring for emergency response vehicles such as police cars and ambulances. Vehicle mounted mini PCs are employed as informational and entertainment systems in taxis, airplanes and public transit, not to mention personal entertainment systems in passenger cars. In-vehicle GPS and 4G communication systems are widely used for fleet management and long-distance trucking operations.
Once you get to thinking about it, the need for durable, reliable, and space efficient mini PCs for vehicular use is quite far reaching. The environments they are integrated into are demanding, jarring, prone to lots of wear and tear, and leave little room for downtime or error. At first blush, specialized applications like this sound intensive and cost prohibitive, but with a good set of requirements and Tangent’s impressive line of rugged mini PCs, the opportunities are boundless.
The starring feature of Tangent’s Rugged Mini PCs are their extremely sturdy and functional design. The fanless operation promotes longevity and keeps the PC very quiet. Also, having no moving parts allows for a greater temperature range at which the unit can operate safely. This is a big deal when you consider how much the temperate can vary inside a vehicle. The Rugged Tank Mini PC can operate at up to 153° F and as low as -4° F. The fins on the PCs case aren’t just for looks either, they are quite adept at keeping the unit’s temperature as cool and stable as possible.
The next issue that’s often encountered with in-vehicle computers is the constant vibration, jolts and bumps felt during driving. For a person it’s annoying, but for most computers it’s quite potentially damaging. The Tangent Rugged Mini PCs’ extruded aluminum chassis is shock and vibration resistant, and many come with mounting brackets that are VESA standard compliant. The effort into keeping these mini PCs stable and reliable will provide the confidence to use the systems over most any terrain. Many in the Rugged series also come installed with watchdogs timers. Watchdogs add critical monitoring features that allows the system to detect and recover from system failures on its own.
Another common challenge encountered is space. Real estate within a vehicle is already pretty tight, so a mini PC needs to be compact and lightweight while still offering most of the same features and outputs as a full sized computer. Tangent’s Rugged Mini PCs are all under 10 pounds and not much longer than a pencil. The Rugged E2 comes in at 4.6 lbs while the Rugged L1 is a featherweight at 2.9 lbs. Options for input/output ports range from 1 to nearly 30 on the PCs in the series, as well as a wide range of options for memory and even wireless capabilities; they are extremely versatile to fit the job and still be cost effective to the consumer. If there’s a need for an in-vehicle mini PC, Tangent has a product to suit it perfectly.