EC1311 coming up

Six editions of the bi-annual elektro:camp have been organized since October 2010. The seventh one will take place on the island of Texel, a few kilometers off the Dutch coast. As always, admission to the event is free as in beer while the participating projects are free as in speech. We only ask you to add your name to the sign-up page in advance. Hope to see you there in three weeks!

Summer break

Flukso HQ will be void from August 1 to 15. Orders placed before July 30 will still be shipped before the break. All others will have to wait until August 16.

R223 release notes

Firmware release 223 introduces some bug fixes and a series of new features. The most significant new feature is support for the B-version of the FLM02. We've now got a unified firmware for both the FLM02A as well as the FLM02B. Hence we do not have to worry about back porting code changes from one firmware branch to the other. Below is a list of new features in r223:

  • Improved robustness of the sensor board in case of a power loss, meaning less false positives will be triggered.
  • A supervisor daemon that continuously monitors the correctness of the local system time setting and the health of the wifi link. The supervisor takes corrective action where needed.
  • The local, real-time HTTP/REST sensor interface is now enabled by default. This should reduce the reporting of dashboard minute tab errors.
  • A Mosquitto MQTT broker on each FLM. Sensor readings are injected into the broker and can be read out by any MQTT client. Point the client to the FLM's IP address and select port 1883. Gauge (Watt) and counter (Wh) readings are published on /sensor/xyz/gauge and /sensor/xyz/counter topics respectively.
  • A new local user interface for configuring the FLM. The UI should be more user friendly, providing detailed FLM status feedback on the status page. When settings are being saved to the FLM, a progress bar and text area will provide details on the actions being carried out.

Specific FLM02B-related features:

  • Support for toggling the port type of ports 2 and 3 between analog (clamp) and pulse.
  • A driver for the RFM12B 868MHz radio that's present on the new v2.2 sensor board. The radio driver packet format is compatible with the Jeenode format, opening up a world of possibilities to extend the Fluksometer with a range of wireless sensors like temperature, humidity, movement detection. Because the full coupling between wireless sensors and Flukso back-end hasn't yet been completed, this feature is still considered experimental.
  • A Dutch P1-port telegram parser. It converts the P1 port data to standard Flukso sensor readings. Hence, there's no difference in the dash or the API when accessing a sensor whose time-series data was generated by a current clamp, a DIN-rail kWh meter or a local smart meter port. The sensor associated with the smart meter will count backwards when power is injected into the grid.

Known issues:

  • Real-time readings are not correct for pulse inputs with meter constants that are is not an integer fraction, see this forum post. So constants like 0.5, 0.25, 0.2, 0.1 will work correctly with the real-time interface, while 0.625 and 0.4 will cause bogus values.

Everyone with a Fluksometer serial in the FL02xxxxxx or FL03xxxxxx range can now upgrade his FLM via a simple click on the settings (cogwheels in the top right corner) > devices page. The actual upgrade will take place on the next hourly FLM heartbeat. Make sure to keep your FLM humming during a scheduled upgrade.

Server Maintenance

The Flukso server is scheduled to receive both hardware and software maintenance between 22h and 24h CET today. While some server downtime is unavoidable, we will try to make this service interruption as short as possible.

Valentine

It's always nice when your shipper delivers a much-awaited package on Valentine's day. Mine contained the first production run of the version 2.2 sensor boards. Initial testing is looking good with more probing planned for next week.