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Designing a Temperature Monitoring System.

Temperature monitoring systems are incredibly useful tools for system heat monitoring at all of your remote telecom sites.

A well designed temperature control monitoring system will help you to avoid heat buildup at your telecom locations. Temperature monitoring is also important at less industrial "IT" locations like server rooms and data centers. The right temperature monitoring system will enable you to track of critical temperatures at all of your sites.

The first consideration you have in evaluating temperature monitoring systems is what type of sensor to use. Analog sensors are superior to digital sensors, because they measure temperature across a continuous range. Digital temperature monitoring, by contrast, will only tell you if the temperature is above or below a set value. There's no way to know how much the temperature has risen (or fallen) beyond the temperature you specify.

Analog sensors are recommended in most cases when you're setting up a temperature monitoring system. However, a digital temperature sensor is 100% more useful than nothing at all.

NetGuardin 216 RTU web interface with temperature gauge
Here, the NetGuardian 216's web interface provides a highly visual system for monitoring temperature remotely.

Related Temperature Monitoring System Equipment:

To get the threshold alert capability with analog sensors you need to select the right alarm remote (RTU). An RTU bridges the gap between your sensors and you central office.

An RTU can send temperature monitoring system alerts to other locations if your company doesn't have a network operations center (NOC). If your NOC is not staffed, good RTU's can send phone or email alerts. However if your NOC is open, your RTU can send a protocol based alert directly to your central master station. Your monitoring team/dispatchers will then be able to assess the urgency of the temperature threat and take appropriate action.

You can also use direct single wire temperature sensors that use one wire to transmit both communication and deliver sensor power. An additional benefit of one wire sensors is that they are daisy chainable. This allows you to effectively monitor the temperature of several key locations within your site with minimum fuss.

Another option is to use industry standard external temperature sensors and an RTU with a built-in twelve volt power supply. This is the voltage that most external sensors require. Choosing this type of RTU is convenient, because you eliminate the need to separately wire and power your sensor.

Running a giant external power transformer brick is a silly proposition when powering a little sensor. Most of the time, your power brick will be much larger than the sensor it powers. You can do much better when building your network based temperature monitoring system.

You need to choose a remote that has the sensor capacity you need. If you only have to monitor one or two sensors you should not purchase a remote with dozens of sensor inputs. However, the opposite is even worse. Purchasing an RTU with too few sensor inputs means that you won't have adequate monitoring.

Featured Temperature Monitoring Systems

We really should spend some time looking at a specific temperature monitoring system offering from a contemporary manufacturer.

Let's begin by reviewing an RTU that's built to handle server rooms, data closets, and even telecom environments. This RTU is the TempDefender IT. It's a small RTU that includes the "D-Wire" sensor interface described above. The TempDefender IT supports up to 16 sensors but remains a good value.

If you'd like your temperature monitoring system to call you when alarms occur, you should consider: the NetGuardian LT. This RTU will call your phone (either cellular or landline) whenever a high temperature situation demands your attention. Especially if you have just a few areas to monitor, this is a one-box approach to a temperature monitoring system. As you'd expect, it's also one of the most cost effective.

If have a larger site that requires system temperature monitoring, you should consider an RTU like the NetGuardian 832A. With 32 digital inputs and 8 analog inputs, the NetGuardian 832A meets the monitoring requirements of all but the largest installations..

Featured Temperature Monitoring System
To help you better understand temperature monitoring systems, let's take a look at a project from DPS Telecom's recent history.

One day recently, Evan called in looking for a small RTU. He had 1-4 sites that needed to be covered by a temperature monitoring system, among other types of monitoring. Evan needed about 8 discrete alarms points, 3 control relays, and 1 serial port for COM port redirect. He also wanted 1-4 generic analog inputs (for collecting sensor data from temperature sensors and other sensors).

A big issue for Evan was windshield time, the hours that technicians spend traveling to and from remote sites. For Evan's company, some sites were up to two hours away from the central office.

Evan had a couple of sites that were solar powered with backup generators. The generators would run whenever the solar panels did not create enough electricity. The generators had problems when they had to kick on and off a couple times a day.

Sensor for monitoring temperature
This remote temperature sensor has a visible meter, but it also transmits system temperature data back to you.

If the generator did not start, they would have the inverter cut out. This would prevent the batteries from draining to the point of damage. This would cause the site to go down.

We received this email from Evan, describing more of his need a temperature monitoring system:

"This is a remote communications site with a microwave link and Ethernet connection to our own intranet. Likely power the unit off 110 VAC, though we might prefer to put in a DC-DC converter off the +48 VDC bank unless your unit will run off as high as +60 VDC. Site is solar powered with 4 Outback charge controllers, 4,000 Ah of batteries, 15 KVA of Outback inverters and a 30 KVA generator.

We would want to monitor:

Control via relays:

Nice to have:

Sincerely, Evan"

I hope this introduction to temperature monitoring systems has been useful for you.

Related Topics:
Temperature Monitor

Related Temperature Monitoring System Equipment:


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