Because I have seperated my hardware in a rack (station-PA-Antenna Controller) from my office with the computer, all is remote connected via Ethernet. Until now I have remote connected the SDR Radio and the Antenna Controller, but every time I will use it, I must take the tour in the cellar to my rack, to power the right equipment on and off.
I would be nice to get it “online”, so that it could be controlled from my Computer in the office. Following items are to be controlled:
Power On/OFF: Transverter,PA 2 M, PA 6 M, Antenna Controller
Temperature on both PA’s
Power / SWR on the Antenna – Later.
All displayed on a webpage with push buttons and gauge for temperature / SWR – Power.
The best solution for me, was to get it done with som Arduino code, and some hardware.
Because the code was growing more than there are space for in a Arduino Uno, I have chosen the ATMEGA 2560 in the Core version. I could have chosen the Arduino MEGA2560 board with Ethernet Shield on top, but my intension was to put it on are smaller PCB layout, to get the standby power down. In the first version I used following items:
MEGA 2560 Core
Catalex MicroSD Card Adapter
Fundino HANRUN Ethernet Card
4 channel Relay shield with optocoupler
All bought on Ebay.
Not all was as predicted from the beginning, and at the end I found out that some of the units had bad fauilures in the design. It was the Ethernet Controller and the SD Card Controller that did not function right on the SPI bus. They are both not releasing the bus when they are deselected. Bad design from China when this small cards where used together. When using alone there is no problem. In the final design, I will put some changes into the bus connections with controlled outputs.
Well I took the original Ethernet Shield with SD Card, and mounted that on my Core PCB to get my test working. All is now functioning as planned and it took some time to get the software working.
My plan was to get it working with all units in a test setup, so that all that was needed, where in place. From there it was time to make the right schematic and later, if anyone would like to get a PCB, I could make that too.
At the moment I am making the schematic finished – so that come soon. Meanwhile you can see the project pictures with description hereafter.
To get the best way for controlling the PowerPanel, I desided to put a little LCD display with an push and rotate encoder for the menu setup. What can be setup:
FAN speed as function of temperature – 0,20,40,60,80 and 100%
Alarm output as function of temperature to inhibid PTT on Sequencer
Gain Control of Power / SWR inputs
Display will show temperature on Pa1 and PA2 and cooling state with LED’s – Green/Red
Here is my rack with the different units inserted.
Inside my rack unit for the PowerPanel – Picture 4
I will return with pictures and later the schematic and the software