Emergency power generators

Brandon Galbraith brandon.galbraith at gmail.com
Thu Jan 21 21:35:47 UTC 2010

On Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 3:21 PM, gordon b slater <gordslater at ieee.org>wrote:

> On Thu, 2010-01-21 at 13:17 -0600, Joe Greco wrote:
> > If your gear doesn't "support" it, talk to generator service guys who
> > are well-thought-of in your area.  I'd place good odds that they'll be
> > happy to outfit you with a computer-readable fuel level indicator,
> > oil pressure, remote test, etc., etc., though they may be smiling their
> > way to the bank and thanking you for all the custom work.
> >
> > ... JG
> a lot of places just use a linux or BSD SFF/mini-ITX with a webcam
> grabbing a jpeg/png every few seconds or once a minute on a cron job,
> pointed at the controls/guages/meters. Just make sure the target area is
> well-lit so the cam can see needles/guages etc.
> <big snip>

I've solved this in several locations with Arduino (google is your friend)
boards. They're cheap ($40-$100/pop), are easily networked, and can be used
to send the required data back in a variety of formats (we have Nagios
monitoring them, checking every X minutes). This, of course, is no
replacement for running the genset every so often to verify it actually


Brandon Galbraith
Mobile: 630.400.6992
FNAL: 630.840.2141

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