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WiFi Weather Station on HughesNet

  • September 24, 2018

Unlike large companies, Dyacon “market research” comes through customer feedback and requests. We have received several requests over the last couple of years to develop a WiFi weather station. Well, we’ve finally done it. (Yes, sometimes we are slow.)

While WiFi seems like a logical step, the implications of a short-range radio connection bring installation, data distribution, and support complications we were not ready to address at the time. Now, with DyaconLive in place, we can provide the data accessibility that users expect.

Remote WiFi

We typically think of WiFi as a short-range, local data communication mode, but with the right equipment, WiFi can cover a relatively long distance and operate in remote locations.

A property development in western Wyoming contacted us for a weather station for their private runway. While they didn’t have cell phone service in their remote mountain location, they did have HughesNet satellite Internet service. Using a 2.5 GHz outdoor access point, we achieved one mile range. This meant that the weather station could be located at mid-field by the runway.

The low data rate requirements of the Dyacon weather station means that there is no significant impact to their HughesNet account. Dyacon equipment also does not need a static IP, allowing a lower cost Hughes service plan.

Normally, our users do the equipment installation. In this case, we were contracted to do the installation (and I’m always happy to get out of the office and work in the field). Since we hadn’t previously done a connection over HughesNet, I was glad to participate in the installation.

The following are a few images from the adventure.

The flight in – 15 min by plane or 1.5 hrs by land. In this case, we flew in and drove back.

 

Weather station and access point offloaded and ready to go.

 

View of runway, weather station, and utility shed in the distance where the access point is installed.

 

Dyacon weather station installed and transmitting to DyaconLive.

If you have similar needs for a WiFi weather station, please give us a call. We would love to see what we can do for you.

Eugene

Burning Man Weather Station

  • August 31, 2018

Building a functional, temporary city in the desert every year is a remarkable challenge. The Burning Man organization does a remarkable job of pulling off one of the biggest and most challenging events in the world. Throw in a temporary airstrip (88NV) with thousands of aircraft flights and you now have a unique challenge that most event organizers don’t have to face.

Ben, a staff member and pilot explained:

I don’t know [the number of flights] off the top of my head. If I recall correctly it is in the low thousands of ops. Like 2000-3000 over the course of the week that it is open.

Just to give you an idea of what it is like, I made 27 ops last year myself there are about 10 pilots who fly people around like I do. The ultralight guys do close to a hundred each. Then we have the charter ops, I have no idea how many of those there are but it is lots, and parachute operations and medivac… We had something like 160 planes on the field for the people who flew their own planes in.

It is pretty impressive, we spend most of the year planning and then put it all together in a week use it for a week and then tear it apart in a few days.

To the air boss, local and remotely accessible weather data is an important component.

Dyacon weather stations provide surface weather data through a cable connection to a local PC while also sending data to DyaconLive and Weather Underground. Additionally, text messaging is used for weather reports, remote debugging, and configuration.

Burning Man first deployed a Dyacon station in 2017.

These stations are erected every year by their aviation staff and stored until the next year.

After sitting idle for the year, the 2017 station required a firmware update when it was deployed. This was easily done over-the-air, no programming tools, cables, or software utilities required, just a simple text message command.

 

The Burning Man staff do a remarkable job. We are proud to be a part of their dusty venture. (And we are glad that they now have two Dyacon stations serving their needs in 2018, one with cell phone and one on WiFi.)

Eugene

Ethiopian Weather Station

  • August 31, 2018

Getting a sophisticated weather station deployed in remote areas can be a challenge. Equipment that requires custom programming and setup by outside engineers adds to the overall system cost. Maintenance by similar outside resources means that systems may be down for extended periods of time until funds can be allocated and engineers scheduled.

We recently provided a weather for a Small-scale & Micro Irrigation Support (SMIS) Project in Ethiopia. We shipped the equipment, manuals, and a USB drive and DVD with our YouTube videos. The users did the rest.

The following are some pictures that tell the story better than I.

We strive to build the most practical industrial weather stations on the market. This is a good example of the usability.

Eugene

DyaconLive Part 2

  • May 2, 2018

Read part 1 here. Updates are being made to as quickly as we can get them out.

Update: 10 July 2018

The work goes on to make DyaconLive more and more useful. Two table options were added to DyaconLive with the July release, a daily summary table and an aviation advisory table. One of these will be enabled on your login depending on the function of the weather station.

DyaconLive Panes

Last Observation is now give as an age rather than a date. This makes it more intuitive for users to see how old the data is.

We have also rearranged the dashboard to make room for the new table and improve readability. The new dashboard looks beautiful.

DyaconLive Weather Station Dashboard

 

Update: 29 June 2018

One of the features we have added to DyaconLive is the option to set alarms based on instrument conditions.

DyaconLive Alarms

Users can not only set the value, but can also specify instructions and a specific email recipient.

Are there any conditions for which you would like to receive alerts? Dewpoint, heat index, cloud base? Let us know.

Update: 29 March 2018

Chris and Eric released a new version of DyaconLive. The coolest part is the weather station status page that charts the battery voltage, solar panel voltage, and charger state. This gives users an excellent tool to evaluate battery condition. (You have to be the station admin user to see this, it doesn’t show up on the public link.)

Read More

Stay Up to Date With Us

  • April 18, 2018

There are a variety of ways you can stay up to date with the staff here at Dyacon. Our social media will direct you to new blog posts and ideas, and our quarterly newsletter is an email sent out once per quarter informing you of significant Dyacon updates.

Quarterly Newsletter:





 

 

 




Real-time Weather Data with DyaconLive

  • February 27, 2018
DyaconLiveScreen2

Dyacon weather stations have always been compatible with Weather Underground. This has been a low-cost web portal option for our users, serving both their internal company needs and as a publicity tool. It has been used by our researcher customers as well as for aviation, industrial, and safety users. While useful, Weather Underground has a few drawbacks:

1) the advertisements are annoying,
2) only a few of the available Dyacon sensors are charted, and
3) there no user access controls, everything is public.

DyaconLive is a weather station web portal designed and programmed by Dyacon staff for Dyacon weather stations. It is the most exciting product we have introduced (at least to us) and we have some great plans for it. The first version was released in February 2018 and there are many enhancements that will be available in the coming months.

Read More

Particulate Matter Matters

  • February 15, 2018

Dust in the wind” may be a great poetic analogy for a melancholy 80’s rock song, but in reality we generally don’t like dust.

Large particles are filtered in the upper respiratory system, but the smaller the particle, the farther into the airways they penetrate.

Dust particles are measured in micrometers (μm or um), also know as microns. Particles that are 10 microns and larger are typically not detrimental to health. These would include dust, pollen, and mold spores. Of course, some materials can be dangerous regardless of size, but other particulates are dangerous because of their size.

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Weather Station Wildlife Damage

  • February 6, 2018

Elk: 1   Weather Station: 0

A repeat customer placed a research weather station in the field last fall. By February, anomalous readings from the weather data were observed, including a low battery alarm text message. Everything indicated that something fishy was going on – but it turned out not be be fish at all.

Since it was a relatively short 3 hr drive, I offered to make a service call to better understand the situation. Conditions couldn’t have been better for a service trip; mud, snow, rain, and cold are always a refreshing break from the comfort of the office.

After mucking through a 1/2 mile of … muck, I found the weather station torn to pieces.

Read More

AGU Fall Meeting 2017

  • November 21, 2017

December 11-15th 2017, Dyacon will be exhibiting with over 300 other companies at the American Geophysical Union’s Fall Meeting. The meeting will be held at the New Orleans Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Stop by Booth #644 to meet Eugene Bodrero, the owner of Dyacon.

Check the AGU website for more information and to register to attend.

Weather Station Battery Test

  • October 10, 2017

Design Principle

Most Dyacon weather stations ship with a battery and solar panel. The 12 VDC 7 Amp-hour battery sustains the weather station over night and can even run the weather station for about one week without recharging.

All Dyacon weather station controllers have an embedded solar charge controller. The internal battery recharges each day using power from the solar panel.

The daily charge-discharge cycle gradually reduces the battery capacity. Batteries that operate in cold temperature environments or are deeply discharged will suffer more capacity loss than those that operate in room temperature conditions.

Weather station batteries take a lot of abuse and should be replaced routinely for reliable operation.

Battery Testing

So, how do you know if your battery needs to be replaced?

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