Deepen your research. Broaden your possibilities.
The iSCADA system allows for real-time updates on as many data points as your studies require. Learn more, do more.
Deepen your research. Broaden your possibilities.
iSCADA opens unique opportunities for researchers to conduct coordinated studies on a global scale. The advantages of regionally or globally coordinated real time study include:
- Simultaneous access to data.
- Opportunities for online analysis and collaboration.
- Standardization of research equipment and methodology.
- Greater transparency.
- Lowered risk.
- Flexible sampling rates.
A research team normally invests equipment and resources for a localized study using conventional methods.
As an example, sea turtle biologists have been intrigued by temperature effects in sea turtle nests for decades. Incubation temperatures influence incubation duration, hatchling sex ratio, emergence, embryonic growth, phenotype and recruitment into a population.
Conventional data loggers were typically deployed to study nest temperatures that would be later downloaded for offline analysis. This meant a delay between data collection and data analysis, with detrimental effects on the flexibility of the research.
iSCADA offers researchers a method of investigation previously unavailable – real time collaborative investigation of sea turtle nests at multiple sites by multiple researchers on a global scale.
When several research groups collaborate on a regionally or globally coordinated experiment using a web-based data acquisition system, each research group’s project investment in one site enables the group access to real time data from the total number of sites. Thus, multiple researchers from multiple sites are able to conduct nest temperature studies of the population with minimum costs.
Additionally, the iSCADA solution enabled researchers to view and analyze data collected in real-time, allowing for more accurate on-the-fly adjustments and flexibility in the field.
How It Works
As an example of iSCADA in the research environment, consider the iNEST (iSCADA Natural Sensor Terminal) solution:
Sensors:Temperature and vibration sensors are placed at 3 different levels of the sea turtle nest: top, middle and bottom.
Solar Panel:A solar panel connected to an environmentally friendly battery is fixed atop each junction. Solar energy is used to generate sufficient power to run the system and for daily activities.
Junction:The iNEST system consists of 7 junctions that houses the various sensors. It is designed to accommodate 4 different types of sensors: light, humidity, vibration, and temperature.
ZigBee:ZigBee is a wireless networking standard that is aimed at remote control and sensor applications. It is used in iNEST as it is suitable for operation in harsh radio environments and in isolated locations.
Master Panel:The Master Panel on the beach collects data from every junction and transmits it to the mini server laptop in the cabin that is connected to the satellite.
Satellite:The satellite system connects to the Internet via a mini server laptop, enabling both real time monitoring of the iNEST system at any location and data transfers to and from the iSCADA server. Communication is also possible between the team on the island and mainland.
With our iNEST infrastructure in place on-site, iSCADA technology allows researchers to view all the important data in real time on their phones, computers and other internet- enabled device anywhere, anytime.
Success Stories & Applications
Talang-Talang Besar Island
iSCADA was deployed at a remote island off Sarawak by researches from NTU and the Sarawak Forestry Corporation for the measurement of sand, nests, and egg temperature during incubation of reptilians - A new approach using Internet-based data acquisition technologies for concurrent analysis of globally consolidated real time data across multiple sites by multiple investigators.
The study was conducted on Talang-Talang Besar Island nesting beach at Talang-Satang National Marine Park, Sarawak, Malaysia. Five platinum PT100 RTD sensors (Minco Products Inc, USA) were placed at the nest-bottom, nest middle-center, nest middle-side, nest-top, and sand at 15 cm below the surface, in a Chelonia mydas nest (1º44´N, 109º46°E). Sensors were factory calibrated to ± 0.1°C (N.I.S.T., USA) from 15.6 to 43.3 °C. Air temperature and humidity were measured with two other sensors (model HS-200V, Precon, USA) placed 1m above the nest. All seven sensors were wired to a weatherproof solar-powered data acquisition system comprising a datalogger with built-in embedded Internet gateway, a global system mobile modem, and a GSM signal booster. iSCADA was the hosted data acquisition service used for the duration of this study.
The high accuracy, resolution, repeatability, and robustness of iSCADA was illustrated in this real time end-to-end IP based data acquisition project.
“Conservation efforts should be done based on good scientiﬁc knowledge and principles, else we may cause more damage to the population that we are trying so hard to save. A good example are the Malaysian leatherbacks where decades of incubating their eggs in open hatcheries have completely skewed the sex ratio of that population, a possible major contributing cause to their decline. The fact that temperature-dependent sex determination occurs in all sea turtles make these populations vulnerable to changing beach temperatures which can alter the sex ratio of the population. When that happens, it can seriously affect the reproductive output and may contribute to extinction of that population.
The steadily increasing global temperatures as a result of climate change and factors contributing towards global warming may change sex ratio output of hatchlings from beach hatcheries. This may have long-term conservation implications, hence our interest in monitoring nest and beach temperatures at the ‘in-situ‘ turtle hatchery at Chagar Hutang, Redang Island using the iNEST system. In the past, beach and nest temperatures were monitored by inserting thermostat or thermocouple probes and the readings manually gathered at regular intervals throughout the incubation. This was very laborious and also not as accurate compared to the iNEST system. So, the introduction of the iNEST system automates this monitoring with the ability of sampling more regularly 24/7 and accurately and delivering the data in real-time.
Committed to the Environment
Universiti Malaysia Terengganu & SEATRU
The University of Malaysia Terengganu’s (UMT) Sea Turtle Research Unit (SEATRU) has been studying the ecology and behaviour of sea turtles for more than a decade. With a small team of full time staff, the unit depends greatly on volunteer manpower for their continued effectiveness.
Through the years, countless volunteers have given up their time, staying for week-long stretches on the island in order to assist the research and conservation effort. With the atmosphere in the camp being one of good cheer and camaraderie, the unit works well with volunteers from all walks of life and serves as both a wonderful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, and a poignant reminder of the impact humans are able to have on the ecology of nature.
To join in the conservation efforts, learn more about the program and how to volunteer, do explore the SEATRU official site via the link below: