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Wireless Micro-Grid Monitoring and Data Analysis


Pacific Northwest National Labs, US Army Natick Soldier Systems Center




The research being performed at the Fort Devens Systems Integration Lab (SIL) is part of the US Army Logistics Innovation Agency, Smart and Green Energy for Base Camps (SAGE) project. The goal is to “demonstrate and validate a smart micro-grid and other innovative technology solutions in order to reduce fuel demand at base camps”. A focus is being put on the following items:

  • Smart Generators
  • Energy Storage Capability
  • Solar Hot Water System
  • Integrated Renewable Energy
  • Energy Efficient Structures

Hardware Architecture

Bloomy assisted in the development of a wireless monitoring system placed throughout the 1000 square foot base camp.  The distributed system is based on National Instruments wireless gateways and wireless sensor nodes, interfaced to a server and database to store the data.  The wireless nodes utilize sensors to capture over 300 major signals such as:

  • Environmental (wind, humidity, sun light, temperature)
  • Gas flow
  • Water flow
  • Grid voltage, current, and power

Software Architecture

The system was designed to continuously monitor and store data for large periods of time so ongoing analysis can be performed to determine the effects of the micro-grid components.  Due to the different system hardware components and distribution, software was developed and deployed at the wireless nodes, server, and at a user dashboard to optimize system operability.  The interactive user dashboard (screen shot) allows multiple engineers to configure sensor locations, monitor specific channels in real-time, and downloaded data sets from the database to analyzed and study the various components of the base camps.