Joe Lee Computing
Whilst working for his PhD, funded by the EEC and in collaboration with 14 other Universities across Europe, Joe Lee designed and implemented an extensive building energy monitoring system which monitored hundreds of data points at one minute intervals over a period exceeding 2 years. During the course of this work he developed a number of mathematical models to simulate active and passive energy flows in hybrid buildings using a mixture of solar and fossil energy sources, coupled with various levels of insulation using a variety of different products.
The computer models were validated by physical test rigs built in each of the participating Countries in Europe, Joe built his own at Leeds University.
Joe's simulations were found to be the second most accurate out of over 20 different models tested - this was 2 years before PCs were invented - his programs were developed on an 8 bit computer running at 4MHz, with just 64kb memory and 240KB of floppy disk which stored the operating system as well as the data. However, despite the tiny computer, his software blew away the other researchers who had all the resources of University mainframes to call on.
In the years since then, he has developed a large range of general purpose and bespoke logging systems and graphical displays which can quickly be adapted for your own projects.
Joe now has off-the-shelf solutions which can communicate with industrial sensors using a variety of protocols such as MODBUS, CANBUS, HART, and other proprietory messaging systems. Sensor inter-connects via RS232, RS422, RS485, Ethernet, 4-20ma loops, and the Dallas one-wire bus systems are all available.
Specific work for a Global Pharmaceutical client required all data capture to conform to FDA traceability standards - ensuring that nobody can later alter the captured data to fiddle the numbers. This requires each data point to be encrypted using data from the surrounding measurements, taking into account the history of previously captured data. A satisfying moment came when one of this client's staff asked around the office if anyone new how to use a software package supplied with some instruments they'd just bought - Joe had actually written the software for the equipment manufacturer 4 years earlier!
Programs can be written in a wide range of high and low level languages, including Delphi, VB, C, C++, C#, Fortran, Pascal, Modula2, or any other of your choosing.
Joe designs and builds data acquisition electronics to order, and has installations in place controlling cutting edge research and development in Multi-National Corporations.