Home Forum Hardware Model D feedback

This topic contains 63 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  SaltoUYStation 2 years ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 64 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #4581

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Committed to the Hackaday Prize 2015 recognition and the IndieGogo crowdfunding campaign, the long uRADMonitor D development was pushed continuously until reaching its goals. Some on the ups and downs here.
    Finally, the first model D units have started to ship. This thread is mainly for feedback and for helping the happy uRADMonitor D owners get the most out of their new gadget.
    Please post your feedback, including what you like, or what you would like to see improved. Don’t forget to include pictures of your device. Here’s mine, while I visited Alba Iulia, one of the first #smartcities that embraced the uRADMonitor technology.
    As it happened with the other hardware units, constant work is being put into constantly improving the software. So keep an eye on that too.

    #4584

    Steve
    Participant

    I received mine thanks Radu.

    One thing I’ve noticed is that the temperature reported is higher than ambient, it is as if it is being influenced by something inside the case.

    After having it for ~24 hours, I’ve decided to follow the tip in the manual and use my phone as a hot spot. It’s easier than re-entering the WiFi settings between work and home for example.

    All good so far.

    Regards,

    Steve.

    #4593

    Mike Poulson
    Participant

    I thought I would brag a little!

    I got my Model D yesterday in the mail (Seattle WA). Things have been great with it. I have taken it around my office (Microsoft) to see how the VOC and PM 2.5 as well as show off to a few people. The Radiation sensors align with other devices I have as well.

    I am glad that the team decided to wait a little longer to ship a great product. It is amazing to see the progress that has been made to get it to us early backers. I am excited for the future as these devices become more popular and mainstream.

    Maybe someone should try to get a HoloLens and Model D to work together! I would love to see current environmental readings while using AR.

    Thanks Radu and team!
    Mike Poulson

    #4619

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Chuck probably wouldn’t have posted this, he sent me a nice email instead checking what to do.
    After the long wait with the model D production, I was happy to ship the first units, including his the 64000003, but the outcome is terrible, see the picture attached below.

    The unit was fine prior to shipping: https://www.uradmonitor.com/?open=64000003&sensor=cpm . I’m posting this to show how things don’t always go as planned. Of course, 64000003 will be repaired asap.

    Attachments:
    #4627

    Steve
    Participant

    Hi Radu,

    Another feature / option I’d like to see available if possible is the ability to turn on / off SD card logging on the Settings page.

    At the moment, removing the SD card satisfies this, but it is fiddly to insert / remove the card and probably not a good way to do it anyway.

    Regards,

    Steve.

    #4631

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Good idea, will be added!

    #4634

    Kurt
    Participant

    Model D arrived Yesterday.

    The box was a little crushed on one end but the bubble wrap protected the unit. The GPS antenna cover had to be snapped back on.

    I tried it out and the unit works. I do have a number of questions:

    Is there an explanation of all these things somewhere on the website?

    RTCTIME LOCALTIME LATITUDE LONGITUDE ALTITUDE SPEED TEMPERATURE PRESSURE HUMIDITY VOC PM25 BATTERY CPM VOLTAGE DUTY GPS WIFI HTTP
    1500380734 275 37.97089 -76.126457 65.7 53.71 28.07 101291 34.67 23992 0 3.98 8 476 573 1 0 0

    In the outputted CSV file what is the “RTCTime”? I tried to format using Excel. And then what is the column next to it “Local Time”?

    Altitude is in meters? Speed is kilometers? How do you move from CPM to the units that display on the screen?

    What do the file names means? They are just the date and a new file will be created when it start up for the first time during a day?

    Overall very nice work.

    Thank you.

    -Kurt

    #4639

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Hi Kurt, drop some pictures here if you’d like. The CSV files contain all data recorded. You can use that with offline tools, for charts, stats or other processing.
    RTC is unix timestamp, here is a convertor than you can use: http://www.unixtimestamp.com but there are plenty other.
    Altitude is in meters, yes and speed is in km/h. The conversion of CPM to Equivalent dose rate is done with a linear approximation. The factor is EQdr = CPM x 0.005940 . (Very similar to other products using the LND712, like the gamma scout).
    Yes, the file names are dates, made that way to keep things organised.

    Glad you’re happy with it, thank you for the nice feedback. Also should you have any other questions, feel free to post them here.

    Thanks,
    Radu

    #4643

    Scott McInness
    Participant

    I received my D on 6 July and I’ve made some notes of observations and questions from over the past two weeks. Overall, it works quite well.

      Hardware

    1. The PCB in mine seems a little loose and rattles if softly shaken lengthways. I suspect it might need a thin piece of medium- or high-density foam on the inside of the top and/or bottom plates
    2. The power switch moves the entire PCB lengthways, before operating (see previous point)
    3. How should we orient the device if sitting at desk (for example) – it seems as though there are sensor or antenna holes on all surfaces, except the curved sides, and the USB cable also complicates things
    4. The lag on the touchscreen can be a few seconds, at times – I’ve noticed as much as 8-second jumps, when on the Measures screen
    5. What is the black antenna/sensor on the front, above the screen? It’s not described in the specifications on the website.
    6. Battery

    7. It won’t power up if connected to charger but it will charge after being powered up; so, if the battery is empty, you need to press the On button and then immediately connect power, otherwise it will power-down again
    8. It seems to power down if connected to a PC but then appears as USB-serial port; this is fine if you have AC USB adapters everywhere but means that you can’t use a PC/laptop to charge it and have it uploading at the same time
    9. Are you planning to release firmware updates for the Model D? Is that what the USB-serial functionality is for?
    10. The battery indicator didn’t reach full, from empty, after being connected to a 5V/1A USB charger for 8.5 hours uninterrupted, despite only drawing 0.5A; it does with a 5V/2A charger. This may have been location specific – at my office it can’t receive a GPS signal and the wireless is busy, so that may use more power
    11. Battery life seems to be about two-four hours
    12. Software

    13. General
      1. There is no explanation for the colours of the icons on the top bar; I think I’ve established that grey means off, green means on and blue means connected
      2. Waking up the screen shouldn’t also perform whatever action is under the area touched to wake-up; since the screen isn’t readable when off, the first touch should just wake it
    14. Wireless
      1. Wireless config – if you were viewing/setting the Wi-Fi key and exit back to the Settings menu, when entering Wi-Fi settings again, the SSID button is selected but it displays the key
      2. Wireless config – the keyboard shows each key as being depressed for each character used in the SSID or key
      3. It only seems to connect to the configured SSID if its broadcast – is that correct?
      4. A single SSID is a moderate limitation, particularly given the method of configuration. A method of saving a couple of profiles would be handy, even if the profile has to be manually selected
    15. Offline
      1. Could you add an option to automatically upload offline data when reconnected?
      2. The offline samples counter resets after power-cycle – I initially, wrongly, assumed that it was losing offline data after reboot (battery was drained)
      3. Whilst uploading offline data, it doesn’t seem to be also uploading live data or adding it to the offline file, to be uploaded after the sync
      4. Whilst uploading, the battery indicator is hidden but the screen stays on – so it drains the battery quickly but you have no idea how much battery is left
      5. If the battery runs out whilst uploading offline data, it starts again when another sync is initiated after powering back up
      6. Estimated time for upload of 912 updates is 912 seconds however, for me, each update took ~5 seconds to upload, so it took ~95 minutes. This number could adapt over time, with a value saved to NVRAM or SD (wherever you save Wi-Fi settings), or at least adapt during the current sync session. Using my phone as a hotspot, it was taking ~7-8 seconds per sample.
    16. Measures
      1. Barometric units – can this be changed to hPa or mbar (which are equivalent)? 101000 Pa seems silly for pressure, when weather services use 1010.0 for the same pressure
      2. Switching the labels and values between sides on the Air Q screen would enable you to change the units from Pa to hPa without losing precision, although I doubt anyone would mind losing hundredths of hPa
      3. “Alarm” on the notification bar doesn’t tell you which parameter is triggering the alarm

    Last Wednesday (12/07/2017) I flew from Adelaide (AU) to Sydney (AU), and back again on Friday (14/07/2017), which is approximately 1600km in each direction; the plane was a 737-800 for both flights.
    On the flight to Sydney, I had a middle seat (14B) and the GPS lost signal at ~8500m altitude (my Seiko Astron GPS watch was also unable to receive a signal at this altitude) and recovered as we descended down through ~8500m. I thought this might have just been a thing with consumer GPS but on the return flight, however, I had the terrible windowless window-seat 9A and I was able to orient it so that I could receive a GPS signal for most of the flight.
    You can see the flights, using the dates above, here; the flights themselves become quite obvious, when you change the sensor to radiation, due relatively large spike in dose rate.
    Later on Wednesday evening I was finally in a position to reconfigure the D to use my mobile hotspot; there should have been about 2500 offline samples from ~7 hours with no wireless but when I entered the sync menu it reported only 1494. Upon tapping SYNC, the counter started increasing at a rate of about 5 <i>per second</i>, with no sample information in green below the counter, so I figured that it probably wasn’t doing anything, and it blew past the 1494 in no time. Of course, there is no way to stop an offline sync and the power switch only functions to turn it on (holding it for 10+ seconds didn’t do anything) – I wondered if I was going to have to let the battery drain, as the counter went on to well past 20,000/1494! Fortunately I remembered that plugging it into a computer and allowing it to install the USB-serial driver causes it to reboot into some sort of maintenance mode, which it did as I expected. After then disconnecting and powering up, and going to sync, it was at 1498 samples, which would include the four after booting.
    I think something happened with regards to the SD card, whilst on the flight, since late in the flight I noticed the measures screen reported that the SD card was 0MB – I couldn’t remember if it always said that whilst offline or not, so I didn’t do anything about it; obviously this was a mistake, since it meant that I needlessly carried it around for ~3 hours whilst it wasn’t able to actually save samples.
    Perhaps an alarm could be displayed if it loses the SD card, whilst powered on – particularly if it’s not connected to Wi-Fi.
    The SD card also went offline after landing back in Adelaide, some time during my drive home, and it’s done it a couple of times since then. I’ve never touched the SD card, let alone remove it, so I’m not sure what the issue is.

    As I said at the beginning of this rather lengthy post, overall it’s quite good.

    Please let me know if you would like more information – or less 🙂

    #4644

    Scott McInness
    Participant

    Apparently there’s a limit on the number of times that a post can be edited (3?) or it blocks edits for some other reasons.
    I incorrectly assumed html formatting and was going to tidy up the <i> and <h> tags (after I finally sorted out nested lists).

    I was also going to add that I would say the temperature reads high by around 6-10°C, depending on the circumstances (on a desk, in a pocket, etc.).

    #4645

    Steve
    Participant

    Kurt,

    If you want the time stamp in a human readable format you can convert it in excel. In my example I added a column, entered the formula then did a custom format of the whole column. Hopefully the attached image helps. (There are many examples if you Google epoch to time stamp in excel or something like that).

    Regards,

    Steve.

    Attachments:
    #4647

    Obri
    Participant

    Recived my Unit today, i managed to crash it with connecting it to my USB hub, i’m not sure what happened, it didn’t happen a second time.

    After connecting it to USB the screen went white and i did hear a high noise from the speaker or from a step up/down? converter. The problem is that i had no easy way to reset the unit i did try to press the power button for a long time, after that i did reset the unit by shorting pin 5 and 6 of the AVR isp Connector, it does work now. It dosn’t happen again when i connect it to the same port.

    #4648

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Hi Obri, post some pics too!

    To reset the unit use the reset button, picture attached:

    Attachments:
    #4650

    Obri
    Participant

    Ok, now i did find the reset button 😉

    #4651

    Radu
    Keymaster

    Hi Scott, thanks for the input , I’ll get back to it in detail, also do the formatting, but tomorrow, as it was a very long day.
    Try to format the sdcard in your PC. Also use the RESET button when / if needed. See my post above, there’s a picture with the button location.
    Your flight log is very interesting, this is a first I think. There was a bug with the colour representation, and I just fixed it, see pictures attached.

    LE: I promised an answer.
    Hardware

    1. The PCB in mine seems a little loose and rattles if softly shaken lengthways. I suspect it might need a thin piece of medium- or high-density foam on the inside of the top and/or bottom plates
    2. The power switch moves the entire PCB lengthways, before operating (see previous point)

    There should have been a self adhesive foam installed inside the enclosure on the lid facing the PM2.5 sensor. The manufacturer left this out. Please get a piece of foam, they are affordable and easy to source, and secure the PCB. PCB movement is definitely not
    ok and can impact the LCD connector.

    3. How should we orient the device if sitting at desk (for example) – it seems as though there are sensor or antenna holes on all surfaces, except the curved sides, and the USB cable also complicates things

    I envisioned it placed with the USB connector down, in vertical position. This position is not for charging. You might want to see this: https://www.uradmonitor.com/topic/uradmonitor-model-d-desktop-stand/

    4. The lag on the touchscreen can be a few seconds, at times – I’ve noticed as much as 8-second jumps, when on the Measures screen

    This is important as not knowing what happens can lead to LCD damage. The new features added as extended goals impacted the processing performance and the microcontroller was updated to partially compensate for that. But not entirely. What happens is that sometimes, while you press the screen, the microcontroller is busy reading sensors, communicating with the server, decoding GPS or writing to the SDCARD. What you need to do is tap and hold, gently, as the LCD is very sensitive and doesn’t need to be abused. It’s not an issue of touchscreen contact, but lack of processing power. This might be addressed in software too, perhaps in a future firmware I’ll be able to do the touchscreen driver code better and react to the touches with higher priority then the other subcomponents. Bottom line, please don’t force the LCD, instead click and wait a little if the touch is not recognised the first time.

    5. What is the black antenna/sensor on the front, above the screen? It’s not described in the specifications on the website.

    It’s a plastic cover for the GPS ceramic antenna

    Battery

    6. It won’t power up if connected to charger but it will charge after being powered up; so, if the battery is empty, you need to press the On button and then immediately connect power, otherwise it will power-down again

    Please press and hold the on button. If there are any issues starting the unit , you will need to hit the reset button before attempting to press the ON button again.

    7.It seems to power down if connected to a PC but then appears as USB-serial port; this is fine if you have AC USB adapters everywhere but means that you can’t use a PC/laptop to charge it and have it uploading at the same time

    This is a glitch that will be fixed.

    8. Are you planning to release firmware updates for the Model D? Is that what the USB-serial functionality is for?

    Absolutely. All the other models received tens of firmware updates. Your feedback is what generally leads to these updates. I try to make it as good as possible.

    9. The battery indicator didn’t reach full, from empty, after being connected to a 5V/1A USB charger for 8.5 hours uninterrupted, despite only drawing 0.5A; it does with a 5V/2A charger. This may have been location specific – at my office it can’t receive a GPS signal and the wireless is busy, so that may use more power

    The charging rate is adjusted in hardware. It can be changed using a resistor.
    The GPS uses a custom antenna. It needs a strong signal to get a lock (and also to keep it). Wireless can do a lot of interference on the GPS receiver.

    10. Battery life seems to be about two-four hours

    Battery life is dependant on WIFI and GPS use, but also the number of times the LCD is turned on. Disable WIFI when you don’t need it.

    Software
    General

    11. There is no explanation for the colours of the icons on the top bar; I think I’ve established that grey means off, green means on and blue means connected

    Yes, you are correct.

    12. Waking up the screen shouldn’t also perform whatever action is under the area touched to wake-up; since the screen isn’t readable when off, the first touch should just wake it

    I implemented this feature already, I’ll double check.
    Wireless

    13. Wireless config – if you were viewing/setting the Wi-Fi key and exit back to the Settings menu, when entering Wi-Fi settings again, the SSID button is selected but it displays the key

    I’ll need to check this.

    14. Wireless config – the keyboard shows each key as being depressed for each character used in the SSID or key
    It only seems to connect to the configured SSID if its broadcast – is that correct?

    The key refresh was left like that as refreshing each key would have consumed additional resources, which unfortunately are not available.

    15.A single SSID is a moderate limitation, particularly given the method of configuration. A method of saving a couple of profiles would be handy, even if the profile has to be manually selected

    Excellent suggestion, will keep this in mind for the next firmware update.
    Offline

    a.Could you add an option to automatically upload offline data when reconnected?

    Yes.

    b.The offline samples counter resets after power-cycle – I initially, wrongly, assumed that it was losing offline data after reboot (battery was drained)

    The offline counter shows indications per session. Data is not lost.

    c.Whilst uploading offline data, it doesn’t seem to be also uploading live data or adding it to the offline file, to be uploaded after the sync

    That is correct. If it becomes possible, I will add this feature. But the idea is you will have a way to measure important data, eg. during a trip, then when you get home you sync all data. The model D is not intended as a monitor, instead a portable unit with multiple functions.

    d.Whilst uploading, the battery indicator is hidden but the screen stays on – so it drains the battery quickly but you have no idea how much battery is left

    Good suggestion, thank you.

    e.If the battery runs out whilst uploading offline data, it starts again when another sync is initiated after powering back up

    f.Estimated time for upload of 912 updates is 912 seconds however, for me, each update took ~5 seconds to upload, so it took ~95 minutes. This number could adapt over time, with a value saved to NVRAM or SD (wherever you save Wi-Fi settings), or at least adapt during the current sync session. Using my phone as a hotspot, it was taking ~7-8 seconds per sample.

    Excellent, we definitely need these added to the firmware.

    Measures

    a.Barometric units – can this be changed to hPa or mbar (which are equivalent)? 101000 Pa seems silly for pressure, when weather services use 1010.0 for the same pressure

    Yes

    b.Switching the labels and values between sides on the Air Q screen would enable you to change the units from Pa to hPa without losing precision, although I doubt anyone would mind losing hundredths of hPa

    Thank you, good suggestion.

    “Alarm” on the notification bar doesn’t tell you which parameter is triggering the alarm

    Indeed, this will be updated too.

    All in one, this is very constructive feedback, and I can tell already that most of this will become implemented in the next firmware upgrade. Thanks for the contribution, Scott.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 64 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.