Category Archives: uRADMonitor

Update 21-5-15

Just a bit of a quick update on everything:

After running alright for about a month the Raspberry Pi in the doorbell locked up a few times and then stopped booting, from what I can tell my estimation of voltage drop over the PoE setup may have been a bit off and fed the Pi a bit too much voltage so I’ve bought a LM2596S step down voltage regulator off eBay and will run 12v over the PoE and then regulated 5v into the mini USB of the Pi.

Doorbell system is now back up and running and hopefully should remain stable now.

Voltage Regulator
Voltage Regulator

 

I’ve done a bit more work on the internal house website to add the ability to quickly see the pictures taken from the doorbell camera as well as current data from my uRAD Monitor.
It gives a good overview of current weather,  sensor data and last ring of the doorbell. As more sensors are added I’ll add them in here. Clicking on each of the sensors brings up the last 100 entries and clicking the front door brings up the last 20 doorbell presses.

uRAD Monitor section give the current radiation counts per minute as well as an average and the links below create graphs showing CPM vs wind, rain fall and temp/humidity.

Updated House web page
Updated House web page
Last 20 doorbell presses
Last 20 doorbell presses

The software that came with the weather station was pretty basic so I got Weather Display which is much more powerful and can export data directly into mysql as well as upload to a website, etc.

Weather Display
Weather Display

I’ve found the wireless from the weather station to be a bit unreliable hopefully just due to some flat batteries.

I’ve added new graphs to match weather data with radiation data from my uRAD Monitor, you can see flat sections in the graph where the weather station has not reported back correctly:

Rain vs CPM
Rain vs CPM
Temp and Humidity vs CPM
Temp and Humidity vs CPM
Wind speed and gust speed vs CPM
Wind speed and gust speed vs CPM

 

A bit more work has been done with the home automation system. I replaced the 4 channel relay board with an 8 channel board which will do low voltage operations (12v/5v) and have re-purposed the 4 channel board for 240v switching as to keep LV and HV separate.

This has allowed adding of several more devices without buying expensive Insteon modules for each device.

Here are the different “rooms” in HCA now:

Kitchen
Kitchen
Lounge
Lounge
Bathroom
Bathroom
Backyard
Backyard

The front yard “room” now also includes buttons to capture and email a picture from the doorbell camera as well as start a live stream as seen below:

Front yard
Front yard
Captured picture sent via E-Mail
Captured picture sent via E-Mail

Currently finishing off the 5.1 system in the lounge and after that work will begin on expanding the rack to a floor to ceiling 19″ rack.

uRAD Monitor Flash Update

I recently received a firmware update for my uRAD Monitor so I thought I’d share my experience on it.

The new firmware adds a local web interface to few current stats as well as encryption back to the server.

You will need a ASP programmer that is capable of 3.3v, the firmware which you will have to request from Radu and avrdude for the flashing.

You can download avrdude from here.

I picked up a cheap ASP programmer from eBay for around ~$3 supporting both 5v and 3.3v.

Make sure the jumper is set for 3.3v.

DSC_1122

I then pulled down my monitor and removed the two screws on the back of the unit:

DSC_1127

Connected the programmer and powered it up, be careful as the orientation of the programmer may be different to mine!

DSC_1129

Fired up a command prompt and avrdude to download the firmware to the flash:

Command

Put the unit back together and reinstalled outside, after a few seconds the unit was back up and now responding with the new web interface:

web

Over all a pretty easy process, I look forward to future updates and am intending on building a weather station in the near future to be able to match weather data with the radiation data.

uRADMonitor

I recently read about the uRADMonitor project and contacted Radu who runs the project to get on board and get a unit up and running here in Australia.

You can read about that building of the board here which in it’s self is amazing to see.

Bit over three weeks in the mail and here it is 🙂

All the way from Romania
All the way from Romania
All nicely packaged.
All nicely packaged.
Package contents. uRADMonitor, USB cable, CAT5 cable, USB power
Package contents. uRADMonitor, USB cable, CAT5 cable, USB power

The unit is to be mounted outside under my veranda which means getting both network and power out to the unit. I opted to do a somewhat DIY POE method to save running multiple cables.

This involves splitting out the two unused pairs in the CAT5 cable (Brown & Blue) at both the switch end and the unit end to allow power to be “injected” at the switch and extracted again at the unit end.

In my setup I have only connected the data wires to the patch panel and the power wires are connected to a length of wiring running off to the power supply as shown below:

Cable is split at the rear of the patch panel with the unused pairs being connect to a 5V PSU.
Cable is split at the rear of the patch panel with the unused pairs being connect to a 5V PSU.

Then at the unit end the data wires are terminated and the power wires split away for a power jack to be soldered onto.

uRADMonitor POE end
uRADMonitor POE end

Next came mounting…

All mounted up.
All mounted up.

Connected up the power and is now transmitting away 🙂