★ DIY [Auto] ★ [ ALKALINITY MONITOR ] ★ 3 Tank [HANNA with Raspberry PI / Ardiuno ] with ADVANCED Features

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WallyB

WallyB

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AquaMon Ready to Install on Tank ( Final Real Sample Tests, NO Bugs & Final Calibration)

I would hate to install the Alk Monitor and then have to rip things apart to fix at my desk.

No bugs, perfect Robotic Positions (Centering), and I ran a bunch of tests while calibrating things.

Most difficult was the 1ml sample that's Tough to gauge by Eye. (Or tough to measure by drawing from a container with syringe, since every drop counts)
So I actually used a narrow vial with two Strips of Black Electrical Tape, that when Level (and looked at level) lined up the two slits on opposite sides.

Using a 1ml Syringe is how I positioned the Slit.
Then comparing the Syringe Sample to the Dosed Sample, I got things lined up (and the Monitor is calibrated)

2020-02-19_AquaMon-FinalCalibrationPre-Install.jpg


Accuracy and CONSISTENCY is Good Enough for me to Keep on top of Tank Stability and when to change Dosing.
I rewrote the Graphing to round off to 1 Decimal Place since it's confusing at 2 decimal places.

In the Data Table I still show the Raw 2 Demical Place value.

THAT's IT (Finished at my Desk Testing).
I trust the build, and it's time to install on the 3 Tanks. (At watch some more)
 
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Aquarium Specialty - dry goods & marine livestock

Ranjib

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Very nice :) . Do you plan to open source the design or code ?
I think the Hanna reading that you are capturing via computer vision could be swapped with a direct colorimetric apparatus . That should make the circuit and code more portable.
Stellar work none the less :)
 
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WallyB

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Very nice :) . Do you plan to open source the design or code ?
I think the Hanna reading that you are capturing via computer vision could be swapped with a direct colorimetric apparatus . That should make the circuit and code more portable.
Stellar work none the less :)
Thanks @Rabjib,

Yes , I did consider the direct Colormetric method (via computer vision), and I may do that down the road.
It was just simpler to trust Hanna Chemists to do all the work for me, and not have to figure out their Reagent etc.
I have a working lab now (with Pi Camera and a development platform), so I might even see if the AquaMon/Pi-Camera can distinguish the colors on a simple Salifert Test. (And how accurately)...Have you or anyone tried color metrics for Tritration with Computer/Sensor (how consistent/accurate is it)?

I actually even looked into the chemistry of making my own ($cheap$) DIY Reagent, (I did a brief summary/research here)
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/★-110-gallon-in-wall-office-dream-sps-reef-tank-★-project-genesis-total-automation-diy-more-★.395704/page-75#post-6515585

It may be simple ratio mix, or could have challenges to make to lab Grade precision. However if I make a large batch it really doesn't matter on reagent accuracy, so long as results are consistent, and math can do the adjustment.

As far as opensource / design / code sharing. You know first hand that publishing code needs to be neat, tidy, and well documented. That would take significant work since there is lots of code in many languages, and plenty of libraries. Plus you know that supporting folks is another effort that needs dedication/time/patience.

I am thinking this was the Proof of Concept, and making the Next Model (a single Tank Tester) would be worth build up from Scratch. Properly writing/documenting the code from all my Hacked together efforts. Also as I mentioned a much simpler hardware platform/robotics.

I think the precision it took to make this 3 Tank AquaMon Controller was overkill and too complex.
Even I myself wouldn't want to build another one. It's not for anyone to build without the skills/tools.
The Next Gen Hardware I'm an planning on will be much more simpler, replica-table and for all to enjoy. Maybe even 3D printer template for anyone to print the own.

However if there is any code/concept that anyone is interested in, I am willing to share tidbits, explanations on how things were designed/built.

I think the really useful and re-useable piece of code is the Protocol/Interface to have the Raspberry Pi talking to the Ardiuno (bi-directional). It's HW and SW, where Hardware is I/O Control Line driven, while Software Interrupts is what wakes up the CPU's to respond almost instantaneously (while the controllers are allow to do whatever they are doing). There is even some simply bi-directional Validation for Error handling.

But last but not least, I need to run this Baby for a little while on real tanks, to make sure there are no bugs, flaw, etc.
 
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WallyB

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LAST BUT NOT LEAST....

I just finished the routines should any (detectable failure happen)...

After Building my DIY "Doser" / DIY "Water Changer" which can destroy a Tank, Error Handling, Fail safe design has become a habit.

So with the AquaMon Alk MOnitor....

- I can detect certain movement position failures, (Ie Jams)
- I can detect if Rinse Water Runs out (Very Important to keep Sealed Test Cuvette clean)
- I can detect things like Computer Vision Errrors (Room Lighting interference), and in some cases adjust (Try again)
- I do detect a power Failure (in the middle of testing) and do recovery sequences.
- I cannot Detect Regent running out (no float sensor), but the TEST Result will be way off (no big deal, till this controls my Doser)

IN in cases where a TEST aborts, I purge liquids, clean the system and show Alerts while Suspending All Tests


2020-02-20_FailureProofing.jpg


ALSO .... Since The Monitor will be in an accident prone area, near my Sump/Tanks, etc

I can DETECT CATASTROPHIC EVENTS like DUMPING a bucket of Salt Water on the AquaMon Test Lab.

or Just as BAD...., Dropping something on Top this Delicate Instrument.

ACTUALLY I CAN't.....So I'm Making this....
2020-02-20_AccidentProofingAcrlicCover.jpg


I BUILT the AquaMon Alk MOnitor from mostly spare parts, junk, or China Low Cost parts.....

So this most is probably the most I've spent on any one part for this project. Money worth Spending.

I'd get's seriously depressed if I destroyed all this Hard Work in a Blink of the eye.
 
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WallyB

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Increased Mixing Duration and Added a Pause to Let Water Swirl !!!

** PERFECT CALIBRATION ** , ** ACCURACY ** & ** CONSISTANCY **


I was willing to Live with the results I was having yesterday (with some rounding), so this came as a nice surprise.

2020-02-21_PerfectCalibration.jpg

I originally did the brief mixing since I thought that High Speed Swizzle Mix stick would be efficient.
However it got me thinking that the Test Results were wobbling a bit (Even though I fine tuned the Calibration)

So I decided to increase the Mixing During and a few extra Rounds of Left/Right Swirl, with a Pause in between.

All of the Sudden it's matching the Reference Solution, and every time.


Funny thing is the Alk Monitor Code actually Corrected my Bad Math that I did.
The Reference Solution is 8.12 not 8.15 dKH.

So if it's going to run this Accurately and Consistently, I removed the 1 Decimal Place round off.

NOW IT'S READY to Install on Tanks!!
 
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WallyB

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AquaMon ( PICKS up my Mistake) Salt Purchase ( (High Alk) RED SEA Black Bucket )

The AquaMon is proving it's value already. With the External Sample Test Feature......

I purchased my Regular Bucket of Red Sea Salt last week, and today my Salt ran out so I cracked open the Bucket.

After mixing it up, I thought why not try the Fresh Mixed New Water on the Alk Monitor.

When the Result came back I was thrown a Twist.

THE ALK wasn't my usual 7.5. First thought was "Darn another bug in the Alk Monitor"

2020-02-22_AquaMonRedSeaSaltALK.jpg


I first thought my Salinity was mixed wrong, so I re-calibrated my Point Point, and compared to my Refractometer. Salinity was good 1.026 or 35 ppt.

Then I noticed the reason.

RedSeaSalt-BlueVSBlack.jpg


I by mistake brought home the Black Bucket (which actually is 12 dkh).

Glad I notice that, since I was about to fill my Large New Water Reservoir for Water Changes, and not knowing I changes ALK Salt mix, would have possibly affected my Dosing.'

And even if I didn't catch the mistake, any dosing changes needed would also be picked up.

Another reason why this Alk Monitor will prove valuable to catching Mistakes that I make.
 
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crusso1993

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Well, @WallyB , I made a decision to come out of the shadows and give huge kudos to you for the development of this amazing piece of equipment you have designed, developed and put into practice. As I mentioned, over on @Fudsey 's thread, your creation is super impressive! One thing I haven't seemed to have seen is if you have an official name for it. If you have posted it, and I missed it, sorry for the redundancy. ;)
 
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WallyB

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Well, @WallyB , I made a decision to come out of the shadows and give huge kudos to you for the development of this amazing piece of equipment you have designed, developed and put into practice. As I mentioned, over on @Fudsey 's thread, your creation is super impressive! One thing I haven't seemed to have seen is if you have an official name for it. If you have posted it, and I missed it, sorry for the redundancy. ;)
Well @crusso1993 I am so glad you came out of shadow for this really nice compliment.

There is a name for this Gizmo, and I guess I wasn't clear.

All my DIY Projects are called "TANK MATE" , which is kind of like a Product Line.

And for this ALK Monitor, the Name is " AquaMon" , which stand for "Aqua=Water" "Mon = Monitor"

THis is the HOME Page of the Web Interface.

2020-02-22_HOmeScreen.jpg
 
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WallyB

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So I went to LFS and they (Aquarium Depot) Replaced the Open Bucket of Black Red Sea Salt (no $Cost$) for a Blue Bucket.
Very Good Customer Service (considering Mistake was mine).


On the way home I stopped at another store that Carries Fish and stuff ( Candy Corals )
They had a Trident on their Systems, and I brought my ALk Monitor to Compare tests.

The AquaMon Test matched the Neptune Trident reading.

And brought home something Special (on Sale)

NOW IN QT.

2020-02-22_Labouts-Fairy-Wrasse-QT.jpg


I have no Wrasse in DT and I could use one for Pest Control (worm population, etc)
 
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WallyB

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@WallyB this is absolutely incredible what you have done here!

It's always amazing to see these builds when you think that companies out there have a team of experts to do what you've done by yourself in your basement.
This is awesome!! It is reassuring to see where the future of our hobby is going thanks to hobbyist like you!!
Thanks Guys,

Comments like yours are greatly appreciated!!!!!!

Like I said, my wife and kids say cool, but don't understand the Value to me (alk stability), and my cost savings (3 Tank monitoring with any other Market Monitor would cost me a bunch)

After visiting the LFS store, and running The AquaMon demo for the Owner today, side by side with a Neptune Trident, made me proud I achieved success. (Since I had doubts along the way)

The Store Owner even said if I make the AquaMon Mini. Said he could sell tons. (nice compliment, but not sure I'll ever do that)



I had a Creative Vision at the Start, and this project started with This key PART (It was the first thing I built).

THE HANNA Rotating Cradle (and Capper)
2020-02-23_HannaCradle.jpg


From there, it just evolved.


The next Creative Breakthru was to place the Cradle in on the Print Head of a broken Printer (that still had working motors/gears, and made a Perfect Case, with Waste Tray)

THERE Will BE MORE FUTURE FEATURES since I have ALK DATA (ie. For Dosing Control)

AND EVEN THIS.

This is something I never installed into the AquaMon (but still could if there is a need)

INTEGRATION with (ANY) Neptune Apex Controller and APEX FUSION.

2020-02-23_ApexFusionIntegration-PHProbeEmulationModule.jpg


I designed, and built a Pro type Module. Actually proved it would work.

Basically I emulate a PH Phobe (voltage output), and connect the BNC connector into the Spare Apex PH/ORP port. Calibrate it just like a PH Probe via Apex.

Cool part is PH Range is nicely same Range a Alk (dkh), so it works.

I trick the APEX to think a Probe is Attached, but it's just AquaMon, pretending to be a probe and giving data (like a probe).

WHEN ALK =7.5 (I emulate the Probe to give 7.5 PH), when ALK=10 the same.
CHange the Label on Apex from PH to ALK (Tadah!)

(Shows data ON the Apex Controller Interface, and automatically it feeds into Apex Fusion)
You can then write Logic for Apex to Do whatever you want.

AND I don't have to BUY/UPGRADE to the Newer APEX!!!!
I have two Apex Classics (Apex Sys, and Apex Jr)

COOL EH?
 
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JCOLE

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Thanks Guys,

Comments like yours are greatly appreciated!!!!!!

Like I said, my wife and kids say cool, but don't understand the Value to me (alk stability), and my cost savings (3 Tank monitoring with any other Market Monitor would cost me a bunch)

After visiting the LFS store, and running The AquaMon demo for the Owner today, side by side with a Neptune Trident, made me proud I achieved success. (Since I had doubts along the way)

The Store Owner even said if I make the AquaMon Mini. Said he could sell tons. (nice compliment, but not sure I'll ever do that)



I had a Creative Vision at the Start, and this project started with This key PART (It was the first thing I built).

THE HANNA Rotating Cradle (and Capper)
2020-02-23_HannaCradle.jpg


From there, it just evolved.


The next Creative Breakthru was to place the Cradle in on the Print Head of a broken Printer (that still had working motors/gears, and made a Perfect Case, with Waste Tray)

THERE Will BE MORE FUTURE FEATURES since I have ALK DATA (ie. For Dosing Control)

AND EVEN THIS.

This is something I never installed into the AquaMon (but still could if there is a need)

INTEGRATION with (ANY) Neptune Apex Controller and APEX FUSION.

2020-02-23_ApexFusionIntegration-PHProbeEmulationModule.jpg


I designed, and built a Pro type Module. Actually proved it would work.

Basically I emulate a PH Phobe (voltage output), and connect the BNC connector into the Spare Apex PH/ORP port. Calibrate it just like a PH Probe via Apex.

Cool part is PH Range is nicely same Range a Alk (dkh), so it works.

I trick the APEX to think a Probe is Attached, but it's just AquaMon, pretending to be a probe and giving data (like a probe).

WHEN ALK =7.5 (I emulate the Probe to give 7.5 PH), when ALK=10 the same.
CHange the Label on Apex from PH to ALK (Tadah!)

(Shows data ON the Apex Controller Interface, and automatically it feeds into Apex Fusion)
You can then write Logic for Apex to Do whatever you want.

AND I don't have to BUY/UPGRADE to the Newer APEX!!!!
I have two Apex Classics (Apex Sys, and Apex Jr)

COOL EH?
Yes! That is awesome! If you could get the NO3 and PO4 tester then my life would be complete LOL. Nice work!!
 
https://www.omegasea.net/
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WallyB

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Yes! That is awesome! If you could get the NO3 and PO4 tester then my life would be complete LOL. Nice work!!
Agree... NO3 and PO4 would be ideal. More so than Calcium and Mag.
Top choice would be P04 since I can't do much about my High Nitrates.

I did think about the Hanna Phosphate Tester for another DIY Monitor, but managing (Caustic) Powder with Robotics isn't easy. Don't even want to try it.

Maybe I can do P04 with Reagents and AUTO Titration (using a off the shelf kit)
 
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WallyB

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PROJECT GENESIS (II) New "Fresh Start" Tank Thread

I think I've covered off all I can on the AquaMon ALK Monitor.

Now Let's put it TO THE TEST on my TANKS, along with my new Approach for Tank (Keep Additives out, and No Tinkering)

For Now I'll start a Thread on my (*FAILED*) 110G SPS TANK
I'm giving it a Reboot....Just Loaded Up the Tank with some
New Frags (Some of my Favorite Classics)

This is the Last Photo of the AquaMon Alk Monitor (on my desk), it moves over to the Sump Room tonight.

2020-02-24-LastAquaMonDeskPhoto.jpg


More details to come.......

Hope some Folks Follow along THE NEW TANK THREAD and maybe offer some Guidance/Encouragement....

2020-ProjectGensis-II.jpg


TANK THREAD Link coming soon...
 
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crusso1993

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PROJECT GENESIS (II) New "Fresh Start" Tank Thread

I think I've covered off all I can on the AquaMon ALK Monitor.

Now Let's put it TO THE TEST on my TANKS, along with my new Approach for Tank (Keep Additives out, and No Tinkering)

For Now I'll start a Thread on my (*FAILED*) 110G SPS TANK
I'm giving it a Reboot....Just Loaded Up the Tank with some
New Frags (Some of my Favorite Classics)

This is the Last Photo of the AquaMon Alk Monitor (on my desk), it moves over to the Sump Room tonight.

2020-02-24-LastAquaMonDeskPhoto.jpg


More details to come.......

Hope some Folks Follow along THE NEW TANK THREAD and maybe offer some Guidance/Encouragement....

2020-ProjectGensis-II.jpg


TANK THREAD Link coming soon...
Very nice scape you have there!
 
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WallyB

WallyB

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Very nice scape you have there!
Thanks.

It's kind of Funny :) . (and SAD :( )...

I'm almost back to where I started over almost 2 years ago......

The Good Old Reliable SCAPE (not much more)

Here is the SPS's Tanks TIMELINE. (not many folks will admit this much failure)...

I learned a lot, built a lot of Automation/Improvements of last 2 years, but still Failure on SPS ( Lost Some really nice Keepers )


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-03.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-05.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-08.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2019-02.jpg


the decline started happening around here.....

SPS-Tank-Timeline-2019-07.jpg




Reduced down to Today (2020-02) ROCKSCAPE and a few survivors.


2020-02-24_SPS-Tank-NewFrags.jpg

All I can say is...... ONWARD!!! ( WITH AquaMon as Safety Net....for this Next Try )
 

crusso1993

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Thanks.

It's kind of Funny :) . (and SAD :( )...

I'm almost back to where I started over almost 2 years ago......

The Good Old Reliable SCAPE (not much more)

Here is the SPS's Tanks TIMELINE. (not many folks will admit this much failure)...

I learned a lot, built a lot of Automation/Improvements of last 2 years, but still Failure on SPS ( Lost Some really nice Keepers )


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-03.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-05.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2018-08.jpg


SPS-Tank-Timeline-2019-02.jpg


the decline started happening around here.....

SPS-Tank-Timeline-2019-07.jpg




Reduced down to Today (2020-02) ROCKSCAPE and a few survivors.


2020-02-24_SPS-Tank-NewFrags.jpg

All I can say is...... ONWARD!!! ( WITH AquaMon as Safety Net....for this Next Try )
Man, sorry about your losses and hoping for much better things moving forward!
 

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