Friday, September 3, 2010

Problems in the greenhouse

Anyone that has watched my greenhouse videos (Click for video) has seen I have it fully automated - I LOVE automation! The best part is I can spend very little time in there dealing with the vents, checking water levels, or even feeding the fish. I can easily disappear for several days and not worry about the system. Well, not really, I always worry about it. I just have to trust it keeps working!

The other day, my web site that collects the data stopped receiving information. I use a Wi-Fi access point (AKA Wi-Fi bridge) that transmits the data to our house - then to the Internet site. Upon closer inspection, the bridge wasn't powered up. I checked the power supply and it was good, then decided to pull apart the bridge. This bridge is designed to be used in the comfort of your home, not the harsh conditions of a greenhouse. It's easy to understand why industrial controllers can get quite expensive. Next time around, I'll probably get the same cheap bridge, then throw it in a NEMA (waterproof) box and try to figure out how to get the antenna through the case....


4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic rig!

You don't have to go with an external antenna of a IP55 enclosure.... other wise try this idea :) http://bjblaster.homedns.org/projects/pc-epia/tinnet_wireless/index.html

Cheers

Bj

Ken said...

As someone that has done a fair amount of work in the outdoor wireless space, take a look at the Ubiquiti NanoStation Loco. They're cheap (~$50) and will take everything your greenhouse can throw at them. By way of disclaimer, I don't work for the company, resell their equipment or make any commission by shilling their products, I just like to recommend what I know works.

Love your project, by the way.

And if you ever need any help with the wireless gear, email me at my name at Gmail.

Ken DiPietro

Anonymous said...

Hi Rob great stuff by the way. I would like to discuss aquaponics further with you. How can we communicate other than through this blog? Do you have a Facebook page? Regards, Patrick.

Web4Deb said...

You can reach me personal messages through the forum at www.backyardaquaponics.com. I'm also user web4deb. (I don't like to post my address here to limit the spam!)