Gavin Gray is the owner and sole employee of Los Angeles, California-based automation integrator and machine builder GG Services, which designs and installs custom control systems in the southwestern United States. GG Services specializes in alternative energy systems and industrial machines.
Gray is a busy guy, and when a client needed remote, real-time access to its mobile water treatment system—specifically access to the Opto 22 control system he had built—Gray recognized that delivering this remote access was going to demand a lot of his time. He was up to the job, but thought that his time was better spent on other tasks.
Gray had added remote monitoring and HMI capabilities to control systems before, and he knew that a number of problems often turned up in the process. Installing, configuring, debugging, and deploying the various elements of a remote access system can grow complicated when, for example, the control system and remote access system have difficulty exchanging information.
Or when a PC-based HMI requires access rights an IT department won’t approve.
Or when an HMI expensively exchanges too much data with a remote site over a cellular modem.
Gray had heard about groov from his regional Opto 22 sales engineer and decided to take a closer look. He thought groov looked like a simple yet solid approach to setting up mobile communications. He was right.
“groov is an easy and uncomplicated system that provides a web-based approach to monitoring a system and gathering data,” explains Gray.
After installing a communications link at the mobile water treatment plant, Gray configured the groov Box and built screens for the interface. On startup, real-time data on pH, ORP, flow rate, conductivity, and other parameters were immediately available.
The client can also remotely control pumps and filters, set tank levels, and track power use. “With real-time data from the water treatment system,” says Gray, “we can see problems and make corrections, as well as get general information.”
Gray is pleased that he’s saved a lot of time. “groov,” he says, “takes 90% of the work out of setting up remote HMI and remote monitoring.”
Sun Valley, CA