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Consumption Data

Topics: 1. General, 3. Feature Requests
Sep 17, 2015 at 2:44 AM
I've been using SBFspot for a while now and it works GREAT! I've always wanted to take advantage of PVOutput's ability to graph consumption data.

There are a number of folks building power monitors using one of these "https://www.particle.io/". I bought one of these $20 gadgets and its amazing. Just hook something to the analog I/O and read the data out via a HTTP request.

Is there any interest in modifying SPFspot to grab the current from one of these devices and then upload it along with all the other info? It seems like it wouldn't be that hard but I don't think I know how to make all the database changes.

I can provide a link to my device if someone is willing to help.

Thanks,
/Craig KB1MPT
Sep 19, 2015 at 11:25 AM
Hi Craig,
I'm not skilled for the purpose you need; as you I want to upload consumption data over pvoutput. I've been looking for a while on meter devices; sbfspot developers are working to integrate the SMA energy meter (see https://sbfspot.codeplex.com/discussions/539456).
I'm just curious about which metering 2device you bought?
thanks and ciao,
gabriele
Sep 22, 2015 at 2:50 PM
I bought one of the wifi modules called the photon from https://www.particle.io. With a little work (a few resistors) and some code tweaks I've gotten it to the point where I can read voltage and current. Actually, I plan on dumping the voltage reading since the one in the inverter is more accurate anyway. So far I've spent about $25 USD so cost wise this looks like a good solution.

What I need when the sbfspot scripts grabs the data from the inverter over Bluetooth I need it to send and http get to my board to get the consumption current. If that data is put into the database and uploaded to PVOutput I'd be all set.

I surprised there aren't more folks excited about this, PVoutput is a great graphing tool and its a big hole if you have a solar system not to know how much power you've made. I'll keep working on it but progress will be slow since I don't really understand the database side.
Sep 22, 2015 at 3:11 PM
dear craigshaffer, several sbfspot users have shown interest on tools to treat consumption info

-a- the main restriction for further work on this item is "free-time" to develop this

-b- about your point to ignore "voltage reading"
be aware that not all inverters will deliver "Uac" information when they are out of operation

NOTE: i did try to get more info on the photon
but i'm not able to get access to the datasheets and the documents
may i ask you to post them (eg private mail is ok)

kr wim

on the discussion forum several items have been raised earlier; i do refer to a few points
  • "PV Output consumption data" by "penman"
  • "Support of SMA Energy Meter"
  • "Upload of Consumption Data"
Sep 22, 2015 at 9:26 PM
What I need when the sbfspot scripts grabs the data from the inverter over Bluetooth I need it to send and http get to my board to get the consumption current. If that data is put into the database and uploaded to PVOutput I'd be all set.
Use curl to get the data and php to populate the consumption table (see http://www.tutorialspoint.com/sqlite/sqlite_php.htm for sample code) - Don't use C/C++ if you're not a developer ;-)
The daemon will do the upload to pvoutput
Sep 22, 2015 at 9:45 PM
SillieWimons wrote:
dear craigshaffer, several sbfspot users have shown interest on tools to treat consumption info

-b- about your point to ignore "voltage reading"
be aware that not all inverters will deliver "Uac" information when they are out of operation
Good point on the inverter when it's off. Didn't think about that. Right now I have a small wall transformer to step the voltage down to a safe level perhaps I will just stick with that. It's probably easier if this energy monitor is a self contained unit anyway.

The basics for the photon are:

STM32F205 ARM Cortex M3
Broadcom BCM43362 Wi-Fi chip
Along with a fairly slick interface for programming and setup so that the user has to do almost no coding to get data over the wifi link via an HTTP get.

There is also a github that has all the source code:
https://github.com/spark/firmware
Not sure if you can access that.
Sep 22, 2015 at 9:48 PM
SBF wrote:
What I need when the sbfspot scripts grabs the data from the inverter over Bluetooth I need it to send and http get to my board to get the consumption current. If that data is put into the database and uploaded to PVOutput I'd be all set.
Use curl to get the data and php to populate the consumption table (see http://www.tutorialspoint.com/sqlite/sqlite_php.htm for sample code) - Don't use C/C++ if you're not a developer ;-)
The daemon will do the upload to pvoutput
Cool I'll give it a try. I need to look more closely at the consumption table. Are there no changes required to the daemon? Just put the data in a pre-existing table? If it's that easy I should be able to do it. I thought I'd have to make changes to the daemon.
Sep 22, 2015 at 10:52 PM
The order of inserting the data might be important: consumption first, followed by generation.
Once the pvoutput flag in the daydata table is set, your consumption data will not upload anymore.