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Maximizing Energy Efficiency with Embedded Computers
2009-04-28
Product Solutions:
IA260

RISC-embedded computers with 4 serial ports, dual LANs, VGA, DIOs, CompactFlash, USB


Overview

The move from using traditional coal-fired power plants to renewable energy sources is well underway and is expected to accelerate considerably over the next decade. In particular, solar power has been recognized as a viable alternative, and in recent years a number of regions in both North America and Europe have enacted so-called FiT (Feed-in Tariff) legislation that allows individuals to sell solar generated power to their local power utility. Although industry experts expect this trend to continue, we should also see the introduction of a number of large-scale solar power plants that sell power to consumers through existing power grids.
Moxa's embedded computers are expected to play a vital role at all levels of solar power plant operation.


System Requirements
  • Real-time, web-based communication to monitor solar array performance, battery load, and energy generated and saved
  • Front-end communication computer for remote monitoring, data acquisition, data logging, and protocol conversion
  • Ability to handle multiple devices using different protocols for data communication
  • Quick system response
  • Onsite defense against strong EMI/EMS fields
  • Meets IEC 61850-3 certification for power substation applications
  • Multiple built-in Ethernet ports for establishing network redundancy to ensure system reliability and continuous operation
  • Small form factor for easy installation at the field site

Moxa Solution

IA260—Moxa's RISC-based IA260 embedded computer is ideal for collecting and storing power usage data from subscribers. When installed in an apartment complex or even in individual units, the IA260 can be programmed to perform front-end computing and data acquisition tasks. The IA260 connects to power meters over an RS-485 connection, and data is transmitted to a central control center via Ethernet. Subscribers can access and check the billing system over the Internet.
W406 and UC-8410—The main task performed by Moxa's W406 RISC-based EDGE wireless embedded computer and UC-8410 RISC-based embedded computer is data acquisition. These embedded computers store power usage data, perform front-end data acquisition and processing, and then transmit the data to centralized servers.
DA-681—The DA-681 series x86-based embedded computer acts as a protocol gateway that handles multiple devices running different protocols for front-end computing and protocol conversion.
DA-682—The DA-682 x86-based embedded computer serves as an embedded backbone host and central controller for data analysis, data processing, and transmitting data back to the control center.

Solution Figure


Why Moxa

Real Industrial Grade

 

 

  • Moxa's products are being used in several solar energy and power automation applications in the US, Europe, China, and Taiwan.
  • Solar applications require low power solutions. Moxa's RISC-based embedded computers are energy efficient and their compact form factor makes them cost-effective and easy to install.
  • In front-end communication applications for power substations, the front-end processor requires a variety of communication interfaces to act as a protocol gateway. Moxa's x86-based embedded computers feature multiple connection options for greater networking versatility, and the ready and effective protocol conversion facilitates data communication between legacy devices using different protocols.
  • Moxa's x86-based embedded computers are extremely stable and reliable and can be used as high performing backbone hosts for power substations.


    Ready-to-Run Rcore Embedded Software Platform

    Moxa's Rcore embedded software platform emphasizes "Time-to-Market" for industrial embedded computing. All of Moxa's embedded computers come equipped with an OS, middleware, sample code, and tools to minimize system integration effort and provide programmers with a user-friendly environment for application development. Rcore also provides the foundation for creating proprietary applications on Moxa's embedded platform, such as communication between the embedded computers and SCADA systems (Modbus TCP to Modbus RTU). Moxa Device Manager (MDM for short) is a great tool for remotely monitoring and managing Moxa's embedded computers over the Internet, but more importantly, the Rcore platform helps reduce the following costs:

  • Early spec-in and concept approval of projects: Moxa's solution can help reduce consulting and vendor costs.
  • Time-to-Market: assists with application program development to ensure a faster time-to-market.
  • Maintenance cost: bug-free sample code and tools implemented on a reliable hardware platform ensure a highly professional, seamless hardware and software integration for your embedded system.