January 18, 2019 | by Michael Fisher | Engineering + Technology

Below is an overview of the latest software release for the SymphoniePRO Data Logger, SymphoniePRO Desktop Application (SPD) version 3.6.

HIGHLIGHTS
  • Support for thermistor type temperature sensors
  • Improvements to wind vane configuration and support
  • More detailed sensor history information
SPD 3.6 Overview

SPD version 3.6 is being released in combination with a new version of SymphoniePRO Data Logger firmware (v 3.0.0), which will be released shortly after the software is available. In order to take full advantage of the updates described below, users will need to use SPD 3.6 in combination with data loggers running firmware 3.0.0. Note: Older versions of SPD will not support logger firmware 3.0.0, so it is important to update the desktop application first.

TempSupport for Thermistor Temperature Sensors

Valued for their combination of low cost and high accuracy, thermistor temperature sensors are widely used in the solar energy industry. Thermistors are commonly found in thermopile pyranometers and on the back of PV modules in support of performance monitoring applications. SPD 3.6 enables the use of the 44031 10K NTC type thermistor temperature sensor for these or other applications. This sensor can be configured on channels 20-26 and requires a P-SCM card, which will be available soon.

Thermistor config tooltip combined
200M
Wind Direction Vane Improvements

Along with supporting a new type of temperature sensor, SPD version 3.6 includes significant changes to the way wind direction vanes are configured. The two types of vane channels that existed in prior versions of the app (i.e., “Wind Vane” and “Wind Vane w/ Offset”) have been consolidated to one type called “Wind Vane.” This channel type now allows scale factor and offset settings to be applied for any wind direction sensor and we have added a new value called “Total Direction Offset” to this type of sensor’s configuration properties. This calculated value displays during configuration and in sensor history to aid in understanding how a given sensor is configured and oriented on a meteorological tower. These changes combine to add more transparency and traceability for wind direction vane measurements.

We’ve also added some new wind vane sensor options to the default sensors list and have opened up the capability to connect and configure wind direction vanes on any analog channel (i.e., channels 13-26). This allows use of additional third-party sensors of various output types including the analog wind direction outputs commonly available from 3D ultrasonic sensors.

More Sensor History Details

Coincident with the sensor configuration changes described above, SPD 3.6 greatly expands the amount of detailed information available in Timeline where a site’s sensor history is recorded, as well as in the data export from SymphoniePRO Desktop Application. Some of the settings now included, which were not previously shown in Timeline sensor history or in data exports, are:

  • Data logging mode
  • Sensor transfer function (i.e., scale factor and offset)
  • Total direction offset (wind vanes only)
  • Dead band settings (wind vanes only)
  • Excitation mode and voltage
  • Signal type (anemometers only)
  • Internal pull-up state (Enabled: T/F; anemometers only)

The following is an example of before and after sensor history information for a 200M:

Sensor history comparison vanes

To summarize, this release of SymphoniePRO Desktop Application adds increased sensor compatibility, sensor configuration flexibility, and sensor history traceability. Even better, these changes also pave the way for the next release which will include more exciting sensor compatibility updates. Lastly, we strongly recommend that users update to SymphoniePRO Desktop Application version 3.6 in order to be well-prepared for data coming from loggers using the new version 3.0.0 firmware.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact our team with questions or suggestions.

Mike F WEb
Michael Fisher

As the product manager for wind and solar resource assessment products, Michael Fisher leads a team steeped in industry experience. He spends his time thinking about how NRG can advance the state-of-the-art and improve the lives of our customers. With a background in both business and engineering, Michael writes about product updates and industry trends.

View more posts by Michael Fisher