Adding Wifi to the moraine camera

Here Phil is installing a new Wifi link to the moraine smart-camera system. Incredibly this "cantenna" can link directly to the Holmur Wifi 16km away! We don't expect perfect connectivity but even occasional link-up will push the images to the web server in the UK.

Here Phil is installing a new Wifi link to the moraine smart-camera system. Incredibly this “cantenna” can link directly to the Holmur Wifi 16km away! We don’t expect perfect connectivity but even occasional link-up will push the images to the web server in the UK.

2008 Wired probe recovered

For the last few years we have seen more and more of the lead for the 2008 wired probe be exposed due to surface melt.  We were hoping that this year for the first time in Iceland we’d be able to recover it.  When we arrived this year we found the lead going into a stream on the surface of the glacier, and with a bit of wiggling Graeme (shown below) was able to extract the probe.

IMG_1916

Graeme with a wired probe from 2008 which has been recovered.

We’re looking forward to being able to open it up and see how well it has survived.

 

Camera node deployed

A couple of weeks ago we deployed our first prototype dedicated camera node.  This node is set up to take a picture every day and store them locally.  This prototype was put together quickly so doesn’t have the full range of functionality that the final versions will have.

Prototype camera node deployment

Wifi Range Test

We just carried out a quick range test on our new waveguide Wifi antenna. Kirk drove the 4×4 away from the house with Phil holding an antena out the window whilst Alex aimed the directional Wifi at the car.

It’s easy when the car is only a few hundred meters away.

By the time the car was 1.3 Km it was impossible to see it from the house but we were still picking up good signal! It should be more than good enough for communicating between the Jöklasel Cafe and the glacier.

When the car is 1.3 Km away, aiming it through the driving rain isn’t so simple…

 

 

 

Camera monitoring a success

automatic image taken on Aug 10th 2012 – these daily images taken with a usb webcam are useful to monitor the state of the base station, measure snow levels and observe conditions.

WiFi link is up

The network that was deployed last summer via a 16km wireless link has largely survived the winter – one dish needed some TLC in Oct and has since been replaced (whilst not strictly necessary it made sense to do it whilst we’re here).  I figured what better  way of testing the link than writing a blog post. So here we are, this has been written on a  laptop using the aforementioned link 🙂

 

Leaving to Iceland

Well, the day has finally arrived! Today we head off to Iceland for deployment.

What a roller-coaster the last few weeks have been! No time to do anything except eat, sleep and breath probes, geophones, gps’s, radios and antennas! I still have to build a hardware SSN this morning, and once thats done we head off on a jetplane.

So last week we packed the Landrover and a little funny VW bus – which looked a little like a teddy bear. By the time it was filled it definitely was a fat little teddy bear packed full with GPSs, jetwash and allsorts. Just some of the things ready for packing

Alex and Phil drove the two cars up to Immingham with the geography support guy Peter driving another car to bring them back in.
Landy ready to go
Kirk and I meanwhile tried to get some understanding on the antenna side of things with a quick tour of the VNA (Vector Network Analyser) with Reuben. We discovered quite a few ineresting things about what we believed were good antennas, and what really were good antennas. Afterwards, Dennis Nicole helped Kirk with a little mini-VNA device which we are luckily taking with us to test antennas in the Ice.

The rest of the week we rapidly built and tested portions of the code to ensure low power sleep, scheduling and other funny things…

PCB Manufacture Started

So we have finally started PCB Manufacture

The first boards out of the oven are the new Seismic Surface Nodes which relay the geophone data to the basestation. They have connectors for two different radio modules, a usb interface and a RS-485 Controller. Here you can see them freshly baked.

SSN PCBs

First boards out the oven

The second boards out were the new CC1120 radio boards. Here you can see them being cooked in the oven. Jess thinks they look like little pizzas! Yum!

CC1120 PCBs

The new radio boards in the oven