Total Active Systems: 2001
 

How the System Works

The weather system has two parts: an ITU G2 controller housed in weatherproof enclosure and the Harvest backend servers. The ITU G2 controller interfaces directly to the sensors, assembles the data into a log file and then transmits the data via the cellular network to the Harvest servers. Once data has arrived at the servers it is then process for alarm (eg. frost), data is published on the harvestalarms.com website and then finally automated data transfers are done (eg. consent data to council/local government).
The system is configured to send data to the Harvest servers every 30 minutes unless it has alarms configured in which case it will transmit data every minute when in frost conditions or when a new event is triggered (eg. pump failure).
All data collected remains the property of the customer. As well as being held on the central Harvest server cluster all data is also backed up to offsite servers. The Harvest server cluster consists of IBM servers running in a redundant cluster and connected to the internet through a fiber connection with a dedicated backup fiber connection.
All automated alarms (eg. frost, pump fail etc) are process by their own server cluster with built in redundancy. SMS messages are processed via a bank of sixteen Motorola/Telit modems and four ISDN lines are used for the voice messages. Future expansion includes the addition of SIP lines.

Temperature

Temperature is measured using digital Dallas one-wire sensors with a range of -55C to +125 and an accuracy of 0.5%. Sensors are calibrated at Harvest to 0.1% at 0C in an environmental chamber with a calibrated 0.01% platinum temperature sensor.

Rainfall

Rainfall is measured with a tipping-bucket rain gauge. Older systems were supplied with the Pronamic gauge (1mm per tip) while all current systems use the higher accuracy Davis 7852 gauge (0.2mm per tip).

Wind Speed/Direction

Wind is measured using a Davis 7911 or Tru Track anemometers, usually mounted directly on top of the weather station.

Humidity

Humidity is measured using a Honeywell HIH-3610 sensor, which has a range of 0–90% and an accuracy of 5%. After the humidity data has been temperature-compensated, the dew point and wet bulb temperatures are calculated from the humidity and the air temperature.

Soil Moisture

Soil Moisture is measured using either an Acclima TDT or Aquaflex probe. Both probes use Time Domain Transmission (TDT) technology which allows for accurate soil moisture readings.

Other Sensors

Other sensors are available, such as leaf wetness, soil temperature, solar radiation, barometric pressure, flow meters, float switches and pressure sensors. Other sensors can be interfaced to via spare analog, digital and SDI-12 inputs.

Alarms

Every system is configured by default with a frost alarm but can include other alarms too, eg. heat, wind machine on/off, pump pressure low, etc. If frost alarms are turned on and the temperature goes below the set frost alarm temperature, a text message, voice message or email is sent to the specified user(s). The frost alarm temperature thresholds and alarm roster can be modified online.

Each sensor can have both a frost alarm and a heat alarm, and each alarm is specified with two alarm levels and a reset level. For a frost alarm, a paging message is sent when the temperature crosses below each of the two alarm levels. No more alarms are sent until the temperature has crossed back above the reset level, at which time the system goes back into "wait for alarms" state. Heat alarms work the same way, but the temperature must cross above the given temperatures for an alarm, and back below the reset level to reset.