# solartrackarduino

Objective Our objective is to be able to remotely predict battery failure time and risk based on weather forecasts.

The long term goal is to be able to make it cheaper to monitor bee hives and predict colony collapse, and potentially understand more about how chemical impact in the environment affects colony collapse.

Additional Data Integration

Bee pollination is critical for many crops such as Almonds, and increases output and efficiency in others, such as Sunflower and Canola. Long term being able to relate data to crop output vs. "Bee Health," over a growing season may have interesting implications.

We would be interested in using the USDA Quickstats API to make additional inferences that may take this project beyond tracking singular beehives: [ http://quickstats.nass.usda.gov/api ].

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Updates

Patrick Delaney posted an update

Improved 12VDC to 12VDC Isolator to 5VDC Regulator

New way of delivering voltage to the Arduino, mitigating potential damage - 12VDC-12VDC isolator, followed by a 5VDC Regulator. The isolator will be better than a switcher (non-isolated) to prevent crazy transient currents from destroying the Arduino USB input chip.

12VDC to 12VDC Isolator to 5VDC Regulator

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Patrick Delaney posted an update

I was in Seattle over the weekend...pretty interesting maker culture they have there. There seemed to be a lot more Arduino-powered and electronic-measured stuff in the different shops around the area. Here is an example of some sort of commercial coffee measurement system in a maker-themed cafe... Coffee Measurement System

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Patrick Delaney posted an update

Status Update on Bee Tracker - Isolated DCDC Methods

I started using a 1W isolated DCDC converter that I bought online to get from the 12V battery to the 5V "USB" input of the Arduino Yun. My plan was to go from 12V-5V through an isolator, and then use a 5V regulator to clamp the voltage consistently at 5V. This is necessary to maintain the 5V rail for accurate voltage measurements (e.g. if the Arduino supply voltage goes low, the Arduino measurements are off - I know there is an internal reference voltage within the Arduino, but I had a 5V regulator handy, and I'm a EE by training, so sometimes these things are just mentally easier for me, since this is a hobby project). Using the 12V/5V Isolator to 5V regulator method has one critical flaw of course...that the 5V regulator needs at least 6V to operate properly. So, I just went online to buy a 12V-12V isolator, which I will feed into the 5V regulator - also I'm going with 2W components this time, just in case.

12V Arduino Applications

I have a hunch that there are other folks working in the 12V, "dirty power," world (such as solar, industrial or automotive) who may appreciate being able to protect their Arduino (or other hobby kit) from getting fried. From what I have seen out there, I have not been able to locate a cheap, easy to use isolated DCDC 12V to 5V converter boards. I have seen different DCDC switching boards, but those seem to be for applications such as drones, where the 12V battery is likely not undergoing any kind of crazy voltage swings as with solar. I'm wondering if anyone else has ever had this need?

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Patrick Delaney posted an update

Quick update on this project - 1) we are pivoting to use Temboo and ThingsSpeak to build out our solar learning model first. We have been trying to use a variety of different "from scratch," strategies to transfer the data, and it is all proving to be very arduous at the onset, so we're just going to use Temboo. ThingsSpeak has tons of other APIs for us to build in the "weather," component of our predictive model. We're thinking on the app presentation side, we will use Google Drive with an API. 2) I burned an Arduino using the conjunction of a solar panel and 12V battery feeding into a 12V/5V converter switcher. So, we're going to be using an isolated 12V/5V converter now and an optocoupler to do the voltage measurements.

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Patrick Delaney posted an update

We've ran into some stumbling blocks with 1) Burning out the 12V-to-5V interface of the Yun. Switching to all isolated electronics (Isolated DCDC converter & Optical Sensor). 2) Switching our code base to attempt a FTTP approach rather than SSH. We are hoping this makes managing the data cleaner (perhaps trading off cost per byte over cellular networks in the short term).

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Patrick Delaney posted an update

I've updated the GitHub Repo with a much better Readme. Working on improve that over time. Russ and I have been able to successfully collect data and move it on to the tiny VPS. Next step will be cleaning up the data. We're hoping we can get this to the point that by the day of the hackathon itself, we can work on building the predictive algorithms and dashboard. Looking for Ruby Developers and data scientists.

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