Our small company has a very small and old oil field. We are looking for an inexpensive way to monitor and track when the oil pumps are pumping. Would attaching a ST multi-sensor to the pumps be enough? Unlike a door, the pumps are constantly moving for about 10 hours a day, thus I’m curious if this will affect battery life.
Also, is there a way to weatherproof the sensor? Finally, how about distance. Can I repeaters/range extenders so I can have the monitor 500m from the ST hub?
There are lots of zigbee sensor arrays sold for commercial use, including oil fields and irrigation system monitoring. They don’t work with smartthings, but they’ll be less expensive per sensor, weatherproof, and frankly much more reliable. They’ll also have better range because they’ll be based on zigbee pro rather than zigbee home automation. You can easily get the range you’re talking about if you’re using that profile rather than the one that smartthings uses.
So I just don’t think this is a good match to SmartThings to begin with. Check the trade publications and catalogs for field monitoring sensors and you should find a lot of good options.
Sensornets were what zigbee was first intended for. If you have a smart meter on your house or a cable TV set top box, it’s probably using zigbee, but not a profile which is compatible with smartthings.
Disclaimer: In no way am I an expert in any of this, but the challenge of finding a solution intrigues me.
So, I was thinking, if I wanted to solve the range issue, I would go with solar-powered WiFi repeaters (2-3 repeaters should cover the 500m not factoring potential obstructions) to extend from the office to the site. Or…a cellular router/modem/hotspot setup on-site.
I would then setup a weatherproof monitoring station to contain the cellular router/modem (or WiFi router to connect to the repeaters), ST Hub (additional Location) and whatever else is needed. The weatherproofing will interfere with signal, so this may create additional issues. Of course, the big issue is how do we power this?
From there, the real problems start. You’d need to get true outdoor sensors that can not only handle rain, but also heat/cold fluctuations. Weatherproofing is probably possible with a basic case and sealant. Battery life would be horrible. AND you’d need to establish a Mesh that extends back to the monitoring station to communicate to the cloud (or back to the office).
That’s my idea for a non-commercial, cheap setup.
With all due respect, this is a solved problem. The notion of Wi-Fi repeaters and all the rest of that introduce a lot of expense, a lot of energy draw, and The SmartThings cloud is its own set of problems.
Outdoor sensor nets are a bread-and-butter use case for zigbee. I can get a range of over a mile with a zigbee pro transmitter, and it will operate in any weather.
Using SmartThings for oil field monitoring is like taking a home lawnmower and trying to turn it into a Zamboni. It’s just not a good use of time, money or parts.
JMO, of course.