Radio Telemetry has been around for years and as technologies have evolved so has radio telemetry with a result it is becoming an ever increasing part of the modern process control or SCADA system. No longer are such modules a simple means to convey whether an input is on or off. Today's products are complex devices capable of many features making the process control engineer's life a lot easier.

However, such complexity has caused many a capable engineer to shy away from radio telemetry or to delegate the responsibilities to consultants and contractors. Furthermore, even with a multitude of radio telemetry products available, there is an apparent lack of technical back-up and support.

The first challenge when faced with implementing radio telemetry is the number of disciplines involved, spanning basic electricity though to radio frequencies. In some instances many people will be involved with such a system and will most likely include electrical, process, computer (software), and radio engineers.

With this many fingers in the pie it is not surprising that errors creep in dooming some systems from the outset. Most errors, however, result from bad planning or implementation. Only in extreme cases is the requirement totally unsuited to radio telemetry. This e-book is written with a view to first ensuring the requirement is suited to radio telemetry and to then follow through with the successful planning and implementing of such a system. It is split into sections based on a logical progression and, if followed, should result in success.

  • "Before we start" covers defining the requirement and ensures the system is viable.
  • "Planning the system" helps with choosing the correct telemetry modules to actually perform the tasks requested of the system.
  • "Building the system" focuses on wiring up the modules correctly ensuring that ground loops, signal conflicts, and RF considerations are, from the outset, all taken into account.
  • "It's not working, Boss!" is a good place to start should you already have a limping or non-working system and covers common errors made by others in the past.

Whether you have never seen a radio telemetry system before or are a seasoned process control engineer this e-book on radio telemetry is aimed at offering help. Although this book is written with the whole aspect of radio telemetry in mind it must not be forgotten that radio telemetry encompasses a number of technologies such as two-way radio, process instrumentation, and alternative energy supply. With this many subjects covered this book could prove useful to many avenues of engineering.

Note: Although work on this book has effectively been brought to an end, there is an an advantage of 'e' vs 'hardback' books being they are open to modification, correction, and expansion. This flexibility, therefore, allows us to still be open to, and in fact welcome, suggestions. Please email any comments you may have.

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NB: Elpro radio telemetry modules are used in photographs and explanations as they are, according to the author, rugged, reliable, and readily available to him. It is not intended that this e-book act as an advertisement for the product but rather for Radio Telemetry as a whole.

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© 27.01.01