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MonnitSense Newsletter - February 2011
Featured Wireless Sensor

Wireless Repeater

Wireless Signal Repeater

Monnit wireless repeaters allow you to extend the coverage area of your wireless sensor network by repeating the signals between your wireless sensors and the wireless gateway.

• Extend the coverage area
  of your sensor network.
• AC powered, so no
  batteries needed.
• External RP-SMA Connector.

Repeaters do not include an antenna. 900MHz, 3dBi RP-SMA antennas are available in the Monnit Store.

Learn More »

In this issue

Glimpse of the future
We Listened!

You Speak, We Listen!

Recent suggestions have led to new software enhancements.

The MonnitSphere Online Monitoring and Notification System as well as the Monnit Express Software now features an "At a Glance" view for the wireless sensors on your network. The "At a Glance" view allows you to see the current readings and status of all your wireless sensors on one page. This is very helpful if you are trying to compare readings between multiple sensors.

This new feature has been implemented with our MonnitSphere Online System, and is available as an automatic update for the Monnit Express Local PC Application. If you are using the Monnit Express software you can check if you have the latest version ( by clicking on "About" within the program. If the program has not updated automatically you can manually install the update by visiting the Monnit Downloads page.

Monnit Web Special - February 2011

Glimpse of the future

Crystal Ball

Let's take a look in our crystal ball to see what the future holds at Monnit?

If we look carefully into our crystal ball we can see a new addition to the Monnit line of wireless sensors. The Monnit team has been hard at work developing new sensors, and we are proud to say that a Flex Sensor is in development right now. This sensor allows you to detect when the ribbon sensor is bent, and allows you to measure the amount of bend or flex being applied. This sensor will be customizable with various sizes and shapes of flex sensor ribbons or pads. This will be a great addtion to our wireless sensor line, so keep your eye on the horizon and this sensor will be here before you know it.

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Application of the Month

Sump Pump

Using wireless sensors to monitor the temperature in coolers and freezers.

You have invested a lot of time and money in your food preparation business. A lot of that investment is from the purchase and operation of your food storage freezers and coolers, as well as the food that you keep stocked in them. What would happen if there was an extended power outage or a malfunction with one of your coolers when nobody was there to check it? How much food could you lose, and how would that affect your ability to prepare meals for your loyal customers?

With Monnit Wireless Temperature Sensors you can have 24/7 monitoring of your freezers and coolers and enjoy the piece of mind that comes from knowing you will be immediately notified if the temperature is the slightest bit above your set threshold. You can also add multiple people to your notifications, so your maintenance or repair person can be notified immediately as well. You can avoid costly food spoilage and potential freezer damage by catching issues quickly before the issue has a chance to escalate.

Make Sure Your Food Stays Cool with Monnit Wireless Sensors.

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Tech Tip of the Month

by The WiSe Guys

WiSe Guys

Wireless Sensor Power Management

When dealing with battery powered wireless sensors, there are a many factors that can affect the life span of the battery. We have compiled a list of useful tips to help you understand wireless sensor power management and improve the life of your wireless sensors' batteries.

Battery Power Options

Monnit provides a great wireless sensor product with a small footprint, allowing our sensors to be placed inconspicuously so they do not draw attention. In order for us to achieve this small footprint, our standard wireless sensors are powered by a CR2032 coin cell battery. The provided coin cell battery provides 225 milli-amp hours (mAh). If you require a longer battery life for your application, we currently provide a AA battery option for our wireless sensors that provide 3,000 mAh (~10 times the battery life).

Frequency of Transmissions
How frequently your wireless sensors transmit (heartbeat) can have a severe impact on the life of the battery. A Monnit wireless sensor with a standard coin cell battery transmitting once an hour will last approximately 2-4 years depending on environmental conditions. If you want to preserve the battery life of your wireless sensor, set the heartbeat (transmission interval) as high as your specific application will allow for.

Temperature Conditions
Batteries are electrochemical devices which convert chemical energy into electrical energy. Extremes in temperature can cause the chemical characteristics of the battery to change, causing the battery to burn power faster when hot or not generate enough current when cold. In order to maximize the battery life of your wireless sensors, keep them as close to room temperature as possible (°60 F - °70 F).

Radio Interference and Transmission Retries
The radio transmission of your wireless sensors is a two part process. The sensor transmits its data to the Wireless Gateway Transceiver then listens for a reply transmission to acknowledge that the signal was received. When there is a significant amount of radio noise or interference, your wireless sensors may have to transmit longer in order to send and listen through the interference. If the signal is not received and acknowledged, the sensor will try to transmit again until it receives a successful response. Both of these issues can have an impact on battery life. Monnit wireless sensors operate on the 900MHz frequency that is less crowded than the popular 2.4GHz and higher frequencies, so you already should expect less interference using Monnit Wireless Sensors. To ensure optimal performance of your sensors and batteries, try to avoid areas that have an excess of radio interference from other devices.

« Read Other Tech Tips from the WiSe Guys

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Revised Monnit System User Guide!
Naitonal Instruments Labview

Interested in LabVIEW Instrument Drivers for Monnit Wireless Sensors?
Let us know at info@monnit.com

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