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Topic: Engineer/Programmer for Prototype temp/RH logging (Read 3 times) previous topic - next topic

smh3w

Engineer/Programmer Needed for Prototype Temperature/RH Data Logging&Display

Objective: To provide cost effective real time display and logging of temperature and relative humidity in multiple vivaria as well as to log this data for other display purposes.

Project Requirements:

Basic:
- A combined temperature and humidity probe that has a very small footprint, is protected from excess moisture, and has a long (10ft+) cable from the probe itself to the controller
- Controller displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number
- Computer displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number as well as the ability to log the data and make calculations from it (e.x. 24 hour high and low temp/RH, daily averages, weekly averages, etc)
-The ability to connect 4 or more probes to the controller

Advanced:
- The ability to turn on and off a device (e.x. a fan) based on probe readings
- Based on temperature readings, have an audible alarm/tweet/e-mail notification/SMS message sent
- The ability to access data via the internet (e.x. while on vacation or at work)

Pay: TBD


Contact:

Steven Hausman
smh3w@yahoo.com


_________

The only comparable system out there is the HerpKeeper (from digitalaquatics )which is way overcomplicated and expensive in my opinion. Additional temp/rh probes are $80 each. Also, I don't feel that this product supplies what the hobby wants.

There are many dart frog hobbyists that would use such a system (that I am requesting). Some hobbyists have entire rooms of their houses filled with dart frog tanks and have spent thousands and thousands of dollars on their frogs.

PaulS

Some of your requirements may be difficult to meet.
Quote
A combined temperature and humidity probe that has a very small footprint, is protected from excess moisture, and has a long (10ft+) cable from the probe itself to the controller

Why not put the controller nearer to the probe? Long cables require additional processing/hardware.

Quote
- Controller displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number

How many probes do you figure?

Quote
- Computer displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number as well as the ability to log the data and make calculations from it (e.x. 24 hour high and low temp/RH, daily averages, weekly averages, etc)

Using the logged data is something that a spreadsheet on a PC is better suited for.

Quote
- The ability to turn on and off a device (e.x. a fan) based on probe readings

One device per probe? Multiple devices per probe? Multiple probes per controller? Soon, it gets to be a nightmare configuring what to do when for what probe.

Quote
The only comparable system out there is the HerpKeeper (from digitalaquatics )which is way overcomplicated and expensive in my opinion.

What price point for the device do you have in mind? How is the data to be logged? SD card per controller? XBee on the controller sending data to a central location? Via ethernet on a server somewhere?

Quote
and have spent thousands and thousands of dollars on their frogs.

But a cheap system of monitoring the environment is needed?

smh3w

#2
Jan 09, 2011, 08:28 pm Last Edit: Jan 09, 2011, 09:46 pm by smh3w Reason: 1
A combined temperature and humidity probe that has a very small footprint, is protected from excess moisture, and has a long (10ft+) cable from the probe itself to the controller

Why not put the controller nearer to the probe? Long cables require additional processing/hardware.

It was my thinking that one controller would service multiple probes. Usually the tanks to be probed are set up on bakers racks (like metal bookshelves). This way one controller could service either one shelf of multiple tanks, or the entire rack. Often times there may be as many as 6 smaller tanks on one shelf, having longer probes would be useful for reaching from the top of the rack to the bottom to create a sampling of temperatures for that one rack/shelf.

Quote:
- Controller displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number

How many probes do you figure?

At least 4

Quote:
- Computer displayed readings of temperature and humidity based on probe number as well as the ability to log the data and make calculations from it (e.x. 24 hour high and low temp/RH, daily averages, weekly averages, etc)

Using the logged data is something that a spreadsheet on a PC is better suited for.

I wanted a PC to be a major component of this project.

Quote:
- The ability to turn on and off a device (e.x. a fan) based on probe readings

One device per probe? Multiple devices per probe? Multiple probes per controller? Soon, it gets to be a nightmare configuring what to do when for what probe.

I am definitely out of my area of expertise. The extent of programming I have had was on a TI series calculator.

Example: You have Probes 1-4 connected to controller A. Probe 2's temperature sensor hits 81 F, this triggers the fan assigned to controller A to run until Probe 2's reading is 78.

Generally if one tank(probe) reaches an undesirable temperature the rest are soon to follow. For simplicity's sake it shouldn't be a problem to just turn any and all fan's on.


Quote:
The only comparable system out there is the HerpKeeper (from digitalaquatics )which is way overcomplicated and expensive in my opinion.

What price point for the device do you have in mind? How is the data to be logged? SD card per controller? XBee on the controller sending data to a central location? Via ethernet on a server somewhere?

Around $100(?) for a Controller to PC, via ethernet (or some other hardline). Probes - maybe $60 each? Data should be logged by the PC. XBee (wireless right?) depending on cost, initially hard line

Quote:
and have spent thousands and thousands of dollars on their frogs.

But a cheap system of monitoring the environment is needed?

I don't mean 'cheap' when I say cost effective. Cost effective in that the temperature sampling across a wide range of tanks with an extra $10 to $20 off means more tanks can be sampled with a comparable price.

Examples (rack system and a very large collection room of over 300 frogs).







Maybe I'm the only idiot out there who likes to actually see a rough picture of things, but here goes:


robtillaart

#3
Jan 09, 2011, 09:42 pm Last Edit: Jan 09, 2011, 10:02 pm by robtillaart Reason: 1
Sounds like a job for a SHT15 - http://www.sparkfun.com/datasheets/Sensors/SHT1x_datasheet.pdf - in combination with a softserial library .

One Arduino can sample 4 sensors - once per 10 seconds or so - ; add an ethernet to post all the sensor data to a PHP page on a PC which stores it in a MySQL database or a logfile per sensor per day or so.. You can use this data to make nice graphs

Furthermore add 4 outputlines for solid state relays to switch PC-fan's  for fresh air - they need a separate 12 Volt. (the automatic cooling is kept locally this way, independant of the logging PC..

A warning system can be built in the PC if the sensors are not logged, if temp or humid is too high or too low.

Please consider at least a master temp sensor that monitors the room temperature too.

my 2 cents,
Rob



http://www.sparkfun.com/products/8257 - SHT15 - $38 if  10+
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9950 - Arduino UNO - $27 if 10+
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9026 - ethernetshield - $42 if 10+
http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9649 - fan - $6 if 10+  

So ex cables and power supplies ~70 + 4 * 50 = $270 for monitoring four tanks Adding cables (especially ethernet) etc will add extra bucks so in the end it must be makeable for $100 per tank for the hardware
Rob Tillaart

Nederlandse sectie - http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/board,77.0.html -
(Please do not PM for private consultancy)

PaulS

My questions were more for getting you to think about the requirements, than to criticize anything. Writing a good requirements document is critical to successfully developing a project.

As Rob's price list and wiring comments shows, ethernet is not really going to be practical for a room full of tanks. A XBee shield and XBee at each tank may be all that is required. Each XBee can read sensor data (temp/humidity) and send that data wirelessly. The PC could be running a program that gets data periodically from each XBee, and tells the XBee to turn on or off a fan. There really doesn't need to be an Arduino at each tank.

Putting a XBee at each tank means that the temp/humidity sensor lines can be kept short, eliminating the need to deal with long lines.

Of course, as a project for you, there is one set of requirements. If you want to make and sell monitoring equipment/software, you may have different requirements.

Just some things to think about. Good luck.

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