Fishing for Real Time Data

Posted by Kari Grosser on Aug 3, 2017 10:30:00 AM

The Challenge

When tourists visit an aquarium to admire the fish, the dolphins, the penguins and the coral reefs, they rarely stop to think about the headaches involved in providing healthy environments for all of the resident flora and fauna. Management has to rigidly control an enormous variety of parameters like air and water temperature, humidity, salinity, pH, water levels and water flow rates. There are sensors everywhere.

We were contacted by an aquarium that still used many sensors with no network connections. Aquarium staff had to revisit those sensors again and again to check their readings in person. If there was an equipment failure of any kind, and staff didn't notice the problem quickly enough, it could easily lead to fatalities among the plants and animals. Management was looking for a system that could monitor any sensor in real time, and that would send out alerts when preventative maintenance was needed.

The Solution

Advantech B&B SmartWorx solved the problem with the Wzzard Sensor Platform. We connected the facility's existing sensors to wireless, battery-powered Wzzard Intelligent Edge Nodes. The Intelligent Edge Nodes form a self-healing mesh network that reports the sensor data to the Wzzard Network Gateway, which provides Ethernet connectivity via either cellular or wired connections. In locations where wired connections are available, the gateway can use them as the primary and provide automatic failover to cellular if the connection is broken.

The Intelligent Edge Nodes are configured to report on exception. If readings on the attached sensors exceed set parameters, the Nodes will report that to the network gateway. The next time something starts to go haywire in one of the aquarium's exhibits, the appropriate aquarium staff will receive notifications on their cell phones.

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Information provided by Advantech B&B SmartWorx.

Topics: Industrial Communication

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