[aprssig] water level gauge for APRS

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Tue Aug 16 20:19:02 CDT 2016


Yes, I thinkn  you are right.  The switch to turn it on at a certain level
above normal , and then height beyond that.  I like the Arduino..  Bob

On Tue, Aug 16, 2016 at 7:02 PM, Steve Dimse via aprssig <aprssig at tapr.org>
wrote:

> I think you will have much more interest from FEMA and other Emergency
> Managers if you offer water level readings, not just FLOOD/OK. And really,
> if you are going to this much effort, there is not much reason not to do
> this. An ultrasonic sensor is not more expensive than a float switch.
>
> Just today I ordered a new PIC, the first of the new PIC32MM line. An
> interesting mix of the PIC32 core with 16F style peripherals. It is
> optimized for low power with built in RTCC, sips a few microamps sleeping
> with the clock running. Easy to set the RTCC to wake up the computer at
> whatever interval you want. With that you can leave it on all the time,
> just power up any old HH radio thru a MosFET. Probably get the DAC to
> handle the output if you didn't want to spend the money for an MX-604. Way
> cheaper than what you propose.
>
> If you want to go a more hobbyist way and avoid PICs and low-power mode,
> use one float switch to turn on everything and an arduino, it would take an
> hour to graft the ultrasonic code onto the AX-25 code that is already out
> there.
>
> But whatever you do, don't waste time and money with an FLOOD/OK two state
> kludge.
>
> Steve K4HG
>
> > On Aug 16, 2016, at 5:19 PM, Robert Bruninga via aprssig <
> aprssig at tapr.org> wrote:
> >
> > Revisiting the Flood gauge for APRS idea... due to some interest at FEMA
> > maybe.
> > I found some sealed float switches $10 that will fit along with 4 D cells
> > and a 2 Watt Tinytracker from Byonics in a 1.5" PVC pipe.
> >
> > We use two switches, the first one just above normal water to turn the
> > thing on, and then the second switch at a level that changes the beacon
> > from GAUGE ACTIVTED to FLOOD ALLERT or something like that.  It is
> > tempting to include actual height, once it is on, but this two swtich
> idea
> > is a starting point.
> >
> > Will also include a magnetic microswitch so that it can be tested by
> > holding a magnet to the right spot on the outside.  Batteries should last
> > a year or more, since they are never on except during flood events.
> >
> > If we can get FEMA to buy a bunch of switches and other parts, how many
> > people might invest $X to complete them?  The Microtrack is going to be
> > probably in the $150 to $250 range, and I doubt I can get FMEA to buy
> them
> > in bulk.  Though, that is going to be my going in position...
> >
> > (Or any other TRACKER product on the market that will fit in a PVC pipe
> > and have at least two configuration beacons that are switch selectable.
> >
> > Bob, WB4aPR
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Steve Dimse [mailto:steve at dimse.com]
> > Sent: Sunday, October 04, 2015 11:54 PM
> > To: Robert Bruninga; TAPR APRS Mailing List
> > Subject: Re: [aprssig] water level gauge for APRS
> >
> >
> > On Oct 4, 2015, at 8:03 PM, Robert Bruninga via aprssig <
> aprssig at tapr.org>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> TO make a flood gage, it would seem that a simply pressure sensor like
> > we use for atomosphere for balloon payloads would work.
> >>
> >> Just put it inside a pipe with a cap on the top and open on the bottom.
> > Then the pressure will vary with the height of the water.  Connect this
> to
> > the analog input of an APRS tracker and you have a flood gage.  Calibate
> > it with some testing and done...
> >>
> > you'd have to worry about temperature, and the chamber would have to be
> > perfectly and permanently sealed. There is an easier way.
> >
> > It never got much traction, but there is a commercial product
> >
> > http://floodadvisor.com/products.php
> >
> > that is apparently still for sale, and includes integrated TNC and radio,
> > runs for a year on a lantern battery. Their non-ham product uses
> satellite
> > reporting. At this time there are just two stations still using the ham
> > version, you can see the data at
> >
> > http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/floodadvisor.cgi
> >
> > I have one at my house, but never did replace the battery when it died.
> >
> > This uses an ultrasonic sensor that measures the water level inside a PVC
> > pipe, open (copper screen) at the bottom and with a tiny vent hole at the
> > top. I don't know what sensor it uses, but in other projects I've used
> > this sensor with good results,
> >
> > http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ultrasonic-Module-Distance-
> Measuring-Transducer-Se
> > nsor-Perfect-Waterproof-/321714364470?hash=item4ae7aba036
> >
> > send it a 5v trigger signal, and get back a pulse whose length is
> > proportional to distance, easy to measure with a pic or arduino. There is
> > a non-waterproof version for less than $2 for inside use too.
> >
> > If you develop something, please consider sending with the flood advisor
> > protocol so it is parsed by findU, then you will have graphing available
> > for no extra effort.
> >
> > K2GE-7>APFG21,WB2SNN-15*,WIDE2-1,qAR,KC2YYW-1:=4026.
> 04N/07421.51Ww>T+057F-
> > 030V062 FloodAdvisor -30
> >
> > the data is temp, height*10, voltage*10, and at the end an optional
> > sequence number.
> >
> > Steve K4HG
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