An A-Z Guide To Your Data Logging System
A Data Logging System is a self-contained unit that can monitor industrial parameters and environmental data without an operator. In other words, it does not need a host to operate. Now, that is the top difference between a Data Logging System and a data acquisition system. Why should you monitor environmental data and industrial parameters? Why do humans can’t do parameter monitoring effectively? We cover many topics in this article, so if you are someone who doesn’t know much about data logging and its importance; you will surely benefit from reading this article. Let’s get started!
What is unattended data monitoring?: Monitoring specific parameters is an essential task in environmental and industrial applications. By monitoring data such as temperature, humidity, and pressure; you can confirm that everything is going as it should be. For example, monitoring the temperature created during heavy machinery operation. Overheating is a major cause of machinery failure. Engineers and technicians, also; manufacturing plant owners worry about this overheating of heavy machinery. A damage caused by overheating can cost you thousands and hold the production for a few weeks, which you cannot afford as a manufacturing plant owner. Anyway, can you allocate someone to monitor overheating all the time?
Then, what is the purpose of the temperature sensor in heavy machinery that trips off the system when overheating is detected? Well, the temperature sensor prevents the machine getting overheated, but it won’t save any data for you. For example, the machine gets overheated when operated at a specific torque. The Data Logging System monitors everything including the temperature, torque, and the time that it takes to overheat. Also, the logging device saves the data for you, and later; you can retrieve the data to an external device such as a computer to analyze further. Monitoring parameters and environmental data is not something that is new to this world. People used to do it manually by taking measurements every hour or so and recorded the information on papers for further analysis. Many downsides and holes were there within manual data monitoring methods though.
The data you obtained from a Data Logging System is more accurate and neat, so you can retrieve it on to your laptop/PC, then get the printouts for having hard copies. Also, logging devices come with software that lets you plot graphs and analyzing data more efficiently and accurately. Accuracy is a crucial factor when it comes to commercial and industrial applications. The easiness of operating a logging system deserves a special mention. Not like data acquisition systems, operating a Data Logging System is easy as just setting the sample rate and deploying the device wherever and whenever you want. Minimizing the use of paper and employees are other top advantages that we must highlight here.
Explaining the advantages of data logging further: Data recorders and acquisition systems have limitations in terms of input channels. So, you will need more data recorders to fulfill a single task. Using more devices means more confusions. Even if one recorder fails; the whole system can fail. A Data Logging System, on the other hand; can accept a number of input channels. So, you can monitor several parameters with a single device. A fewer number of monitoring devices means no confusions. Also, modern logging devices come with safety features such as automatic data storage, so in case of a failure such as battery power drain; your precious data will be saved on the device’s internal memory. Losing data is a thing that no engineers and technicians can afford today.
Different Data Logging System types: Well, we can highlight two different systems here. The way that the data is stored and recorded are the differences between the devices. For example, some logging devices monitor the required parameter and save the data in its internal memory. So, later; you can retrieve the data onto an external device. This system is ideal for applications where 100% automatic monitoring is the only option. For example, monitoring the temperature in an icy cave. Nobody can stay in the icy cave to read the data. Some data loggers record the data on a paper automatically. Well, the latest invention is a Data Logging System that combines both the data monitoring ways. Such systems can be expensive than the two types we have discussed earlier. Which means you should choose the right type that will fulfill your requirement, and you can talk to an expert in the industry to confirm which type suits you the most.
Extra features of modern Data Logging System: The new technology did change the whole world. The early inventions of the data logger are modified to what they are today. You can connect the data logger to the Internet with wires or wirelessly today. Thanks to the wireless connection, you can connect the logging device to the cloud easily. USB-interfaced, GPS, Bluetooth, and many other methods are there that enable you to connect the logging device to an external device such as a PC for further analysis.
A Data Logging System is a battery-powered unit. So, the system will keep on monitoring parameters even when the main power supply fails. Modern manufacturers have introduced devices that can operate non-stop for weeks. Anyway, the sample rate can affect the battery life of the device. In other words, higher the sample rate, sooner the batteries will die. So, you better keep an eye on the battery level if you set a higher sample rate. Don’t worry! Your precious data will be saved on the internal memory even if the battery power fails.
What parameters you can monitor with a Data Logging System?: Well, you can monitor almost every industrial, commercial, and residential parameter. We would like to highlight a few important parameters here: temperature, pressure, wind speed, humidity, liquid pressure, current, voltage, heat, waves, water level, light, and force.
Some final words: Well, we hope that now you understand what it means by a Data Logging System. The price of a data logger may vary depending on many factors such as the manufacturer, input channels, sample rate, battery life, and accessibility. So, it is difficult to comment on the price of data loggers, which can range from $50-$4000.
Well, we don’t say that data logger can replace data acquisition systems and data recorders. But, when considering all the advantages of a Data Logging System, we can say that it deserves a special place among other data recording systems. Contact us today for more information, and we are more than happy to answer your questions and concerns.