Acumen | DataBridge SDR2-CF | Equipment Setup/Installation Instructions

Ceilometer Installation at U/U
The following is not the only way to proceed, but it works. If you decide to try other approaches, let us know how
it goes. We have installed units either with Ethernet connectivity for real-time display (preferred and less
expensive) and remote on-site storage (works fine but our approach is pricy). For background info, see Vaisala
manual on the CT-12K posted at http://inscc.utah.edu/~jyoung/ceilview/about/ct12k.pdf , but NWS manual that
we have in paper copy even better (see if they have one at your nearby WFO).
For permanent install, you could use the CT-12K mounting stand. We’ve found putting on a couple of cinder blocks
is fine especially for building roofs.
A. Connecting power cords
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2 power cords with 3 18 gauge wires (one for power to ceilometer and other for hood. If you are planning
on communicating via Ethernet, then these should be order 12-18 inches. If for testing/on-site storage,
they can be of length 3 feet or longer.
2 foot three prong heavy duty 18 gauge extension cord + extension cord of length to reach power supply
You’ll need a short stubby straight screwdriver to fit in the tight space
Attach u-shaped spade fittings to both power cords
You’ll have the ground lines for both attached to the central connector with power connectors to CT-12K
on left and hood connectors on right
B. Communicating with the CT-12K by laptop to test and download data.
You will need:
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basic serial telnet type software. Because of some history with using it when it was free, we purchased
Hyperterminal Private Edition (~$50), but you can use putty or other options.
USB to serial cable. These have been a pain for us over the last couple of years, but have found the best
ones to be: http://www.rs232-converters.com/single_usb_to_rs232_converter.htm (~$25)
You need to be familiar with looking on a windows laptop in the device manager to know which COMM
port the USB to serial cable is connected
Steps:
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Create a telnet connection at 2400 baud, parity none, 7 bit, 1 stop bit and leave everything else as
defaults
Facing the power strip and to the left of the power strip, disconnect the 6-9 inch cord with a 9 pin serial
connector from the RX/TX ASOS connector.
Connect the USB to serial cable to the ceilometer serial interface. You may need to use gender bender
serial connectors to make the connection.
Don’t look down into the laser, although it is eye safe. Turn on the ceilometer using the CB1 toggle on the
left. You should see a blinking green light in the upper left of the unit.
The CB2 toggle on the right is for the blower/heater. You will get an error regarding the box temperature
if you don’t have the blower/heater plugged in, but you don’t need it connected for testing.
If everything is right, you should just start seeing some hexadecimal numbers scrolling by every 15-30
seconds. If you don’t:
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Type upper case OPEN. You should now see a prompt. Type STAT. You should get a bunch of info
on the status of the CT-12K. If you don’t, double check your connection to the laptop.
There is no back space when talking to the CT-12K and everything is case sensitive and needs to
be upper case
Type PMOD OFF. You should see Automatic Mode On. Make sure in the status or be sure to type.
Then type CLOS. At that point you should soon see data flowing by 30 seconds. If you cycle
power on the CT-12K, then at the outset you should get a STATUS message rather than a data
message. See the Vaisala manual for how to interpret the messages and the info available at
http://inscc.utah.edu/~jyoung/ceilview/about/reading_raw.php.
C. Connecting the CT-12K for real-time data collection
We hope you are willing to keep one or more CT-12Ks reporting in real time as part of a national network of such
units. See http://inscc.utah.edu/~jyoung/ceilview/ for an example. We’ll be working on developing a database to
store the info from all available ceilometers.
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We had to drill out and file the hole to the right of the power connectors to fit the extension cord into the
enclosure to attach to the 2-foot 3 socket plug.
You will need a crossover cable to configure the serial input to the Aexeon device.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethernet_crossover_cable
Aaxeon Technologies. 445 Capricorn Street. Brea, CA 92821. 714-671-9000. www.aaxeon.com. 1 PA-STXUS Power Adapter for STE(W)-501/601 & LNX/IMC, (US Plug) ($15). 1 STE-501C. 1-Port RS-232/422/485 To
Ethernet Device Server ($95.00)
Use monitor.exe in the STE-501C subfolder on the CD-ROM to see the MAC address for this device
You need to tell whomever controls your network what the MAC address is so that your device will be
recognized on the network
The following is a somewhat painful process to do. As discussed in one line in the Aexeon manual, you
need to have your laptop and the Aexeon on the same subnet to make one change. The device will come
up with it having an ip address of 10.0.50.100 with gateway 10.0.0.254 and mask 255.255.0.0.
Go to the Network and Sharing Center control panel
Change Adapter Settings
9. Right click on the Local Area Network and select Properties
10. Select the Internet Protocol Version 4 and click on Properties
11. Change from Obtain IP address dynamically to “Use the following IP address”.
a. 10.0.50.101
b. 255.255.0.0
c. 10.0.0.254
12. Restart your laptop (you shouldn’t have to, but I do it because this has been a hassle to make
sure it works)
13. Run hyperterminal or another program and create a telnet session using the defaults including port 23
14. You should now see Fig 3.5 the main menu for the Aexeon device. If not, start checking the above steps.
15. You can now configure the serial input
a. Option 2. COM port. Change baud rate to 2400, data bit to 7, etc.
16. Exit out
17. Create a different telnet session using port 4660 (to program the device it is 23; 4660 is to access the
serial port)
18. You should be able to see data flowing. And do an OPEN command, STA etc.
19. If everything is working, then you have two options for the following. You need to enable DHCP
addressing. You can log back in through your port 23 telnet session or use the monitor.exe program and
toggle it there.
20. At this point, you should be able to remove the cross over cable, plug in the Ethernet cable and then be
able to access the Aexeon device through either the port 23 telnet or port 4660 sessions from your laptop
over the network (after you switch back your laptop to DHCP enabled addressing)
21. You should be able to position the Aexeon and the 2 foot extension cord plug and the Ethernet all inside
the original CT-12K enclosure.
D. Connecting the CT-12K for on-site data storage
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We wanted to be able to leave the CT-12K running and just be able to quickly stop data recording, get the
data, and continue.
1 8”x8” electrical conduit box. ~$25 at hardware store. Drill out hole to fit 2 foot extension cord plug
through. Use Campbell Scientific type enclosure putty to make waterproof around cord.
$495. Acumen Instruments. DataBridge SDR2-CF starter kit.
https://www.acumeninstruments.com/store/Scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=16. Includes reader and 4
GB storage card. Buy at least one more card (another ~$40 from them).
Length of 3-5 wire shielded cable to reach from ceilometer into conduit box with proper 9 pin serial
connectors on both ends (see instructions on soldering below)
Look over the Acumen doc from http://www.acumeninstruments.com/pdf/SDR2-CF_CG_10.pdf
Create a telnet session at 115k baud, 8N1 settings (typically the defaults).
Hit return a couple times to get the Acumen prompt. It should have a blue background like what shows up
in the Acument doc
Set data and time (option 1)
Configure the dataport (option 9)
a. B (2400)
b. D (701) 7 bit null
c. Handshaking off
File system functions (7)
a. Current file (like CEIL.dat)
b. Current directory (something like \DATA)
Recording parameters (6)
a. Overwrite on
b. Append on
c. Time stamping Y (this is important as the only way to have a time stamp is for it to be provided
by the Acumen device; there is no time stamp in the CT-12K data)
d. ASCII code 03 (this is at the end of the data stream)
e. Time stamp- use a complete one
Connect up the serial line from the ceilometer to the Acumen. Start recording
If your telnet session is still going and you’re connected to the acumen from your laptop, then you’ll see
the number of bits being recorded growing
Stop recording after a while, and pop out the flash drive, use the usb to flash drive device and check the
output files. You should see data followed by a time stamp.
E. Using the maintenance port for comms and soldering instructions
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Initially we used for all applications the maintenance port located underneath with the female amphenol
connector underneath the unit to the right of the toggles. It is still a good option as then you don’t need
to open the CT-12K case to communicate with it via a laptop.
1 amphenol connector. ~$40. PT06E-12-8P male from alliedelec.com 800 433-5700.
http://www.alliedelec.com/search/productdetail.aspx?SKU=70011059#tab=specs
Connect the amphenol connector to the.
Amphenol to serial cable or create a 9 pin to 9 pin cable for the on-site storage if you’re not using the maintenance
port (you don’t need any special serial cables for the Ethernet option)
1. 1 9 pin female serial line connector and cover. ~$2 for connector and
another ~$2 for cover
2. Solder amphenol connector first as there are a number of parts that you
may forget to put on properly
3. Poke with paperclip/pin, the holes in the rubber seal labeled “A”, “B”, and
“C”.
4. Solder beginning with red lead and work up to black. Pic to right is looking
at it from the back where you are soldering
5. Slide/connect all the pieces of the connector
Brown Red
Black
6. See diagram for 9 pin; view is from back where you are soldering
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