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en:support:faq [2018/08/18 06:20]
gerbold
en:support:faq [2020/04/09 16:47] (current)
gerbold [How to configure for the very first time?]
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-====== ​Frequenrtly ​Asked Questions ======+====== ​Frequently ​Asked Questions ======
 original source(([[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​Compendium/​Documentations/​Documentation_2014-05-11_Red_PCB_10.4_PCB_12.3_PCB_13.1_PCB_14.1.pdf|Documentation System RED]], chapter 7.2)) original source(([[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​Compendium/​Documentations/​Documentation_2014-05-11_Red_PCB_10.4_PCB_12.3_PCB_13.1_PCB_14.1.pdf|Documentation System RED]], chapter 7.2))
 +
  
 ===== Where can I get a lightning detector for participating Blitzortung.org and what is the price? ===== ===== Where can I get a lightning detector for participating Blitzortung.org and what is the price? =====
 +
 +Register here if you want to buy a kit and participate in the network: [[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​cover_your_area.php|Cover Your Area]]. The form is roughly in the center of the page.
 +
 +This thread gives you information on [[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​forum.php?​tid=1656|how to order a detector]].
  
 First of all, you have to assemble your lightning detector by yourself. We do not offer complete First of all, you have to assemble your lightning detector by yourself. We do not offer complete
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 its operation is //not plug and play//. its operation is //not plug and play//.
  
 +===== How do I check where I am on the waiting list? =====
 +
 +You can query your rank, by sending a request with the same email address here: [[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​cover_your_area.php|Cover Your Area]]. The form is roughly in the center of the page.
 +
 +===== What do I have to know to be able to assemble and run such a system? =====
 +
 +  * You own a file, a solder iron for electronic parts and an assortment of screwdrivers and you are able to use these tools.
 +  * You are not afraid of soldering electronic parts to a PCB.
 +  * If you want to build your own antennas you may benefit from some electromechanical skills.
 +  * You have a quiet place for the antenna. Quiet means low electromagnetic noise. It is not the best idea to place the antenna above the micro wave between the TV set and the PC. It should be as far away from electronic devises as possible.
 +  * You have an Ethernet port at this quite place. If not, you are able to get one there.
 +  * This Ethernet port has a constant connection to the Internet. There is some data throughput. It may well be one giga byte per day.
 +  * You need a power supply, for the station (and the network equipment). It may be PoE, it may be a wall wart power supply or a linear power supply.
 +  * You have some device with a web browser to use the web page of the controller for status display and settings.
 +
 +===== I received the kit, how do I solder the stuff together? =====
 +
 +  * System RED see this [[en:​hardware:​red|Wiki]] and [[http://​en.blitzortung.org/​Compendium/​Documentations/​Documentation_2014-05-11_Red_PCB_10.4_PCB_12.3_PCB_13.1_PCB_14.1.pdf|Documentation of System RED]].
 +  * System BLUE see this [[en:​hardware:​blue|Wiki]] and [[https://​docs.google.com/​document/​d/​1KzPZJW0ErInFtfTCmhNhSZTOpg6N2bgZDyIxkh_DRVs/​pub?​1532944531#​h.iubpod4vxyrx|Documentation of System BLUE]].
 +
 +===== How do I test the assembled system? =====
 +
 +See the [[en:​hardware:​blue:​operation|Operating instructions]] of System BLUE.
 +
 +See the [[en:​hardware:​red:​operation|Operating instructions]] of System RED.
 +
 +===== How can I register my new station? =====
 +
 +See [[en:​hardware:​blue:​operation:​account|Setting up an Account for Blitzortung.org]]
 +
 +===== How to configure the Blitzortung operators page? =====
 +
 +On your Blitzortung operators page, configure your station properly.\\
 +First, make sure '​anonymous'​ is "​N"​ or no other operators can see your signals or station info and advise you, especially regarding the antenna configurations.\\
 +ALWAYS and SPECIFICALLY:​\\
 +ANY input with NO antenna must be UNDEFINED\\
 +Input 0 = H A (1)\\
 +Input 1 = H B (2) or Undefined if not used\\
 +Input 3 = H C (3) or Undefined if not used, or if using for Horizontally polarized detection ONLY\\
 +Input 4 = E    ---  ALWAYS or Undefined if not used\\
 +Input 5 = UNDEFINED\\
 +Input 6 = UNDEFINED\\
 +The above is for the operator'​s configuration page.  Now, make sure you enter the antenna type specifications correctly, exactly, etc.\\
 +Any undefined input will have NO specs or tick boxes.
 +
 +===== What power supply should I have? =====
 +
 +One with low noise, 5V, 1A or more, USB-B mini 5 pin.
 +
 +===== How do I access the system interface? =====
 +
 +Check whether the host name blitzortung is known in your network: in a shell use the command 'ping blitzortung'​. If this works, type into your web-browser http://​blitzortung/​. As an alternative check your router to identify the IP address of the blitzortung controller.
 +
 +===== How to configure for the very first time? =====
 +
 +original source (([[https://​forum.blitzortung.org/​showthread.php?​tid=2573&​pid=18216&​highlight=manual+mode#​pid18216|]],​ Cutty))
 +
 +First, put the station in Manual Mode..,. Automatic will drive the gains up and down, and you can cycle in and out of interference.\\
 +Make Sure your antennas and amp are NOT near noise sources.... ​ Make sure you have a good power supply... ​
 +
 +then...\\
 +**With total manual...** turn off the optional filters.\\
 +set gains to 10*10 H field, and 4*2 E field...\\\\
 +set thresholds at 100mv...\\
 +With NO signals present, check your noise levels... average.. touch up the gains so they'​re somewhere around 20-40mv... as close to 20 as possible perhaps... 40 is borderline.\\
 +We've two types of junk we're looking at... "​always there",​ and "​Sporadic"​...\\
 +Now, the "​always"​\\
 +adjust thresholds first, then / or gain for that channel so that the '​always'​ noise DOES NOT trigger a signal...and apply / save.  Try to accommodate gains so that you can keep the standard threshold at 100MV if possible. ​ You may then adjust it later on a specific channel... ​ Now your '​ambient'​ always present sources shouldn['​t trigger anything... Call this Baseline #1\\
 +Then...\\
 +**Ideally**,​ you want to operate so that the WORST sporadic interference doesn'​t trigger a signal. You're still in absolute manual, with the optional filters off.  That should put you into '​ambient'​ operation Baseline #2... while doing this, keep your threshold at least twice what the ambient 'noise grass' (no signal) level may be.
 +
 +If you have an obvious noise source at , say 150kHZ, you could adjust the optional filter to cut off at about 130-140 kHz... you'd monitor each channel, for a period of time, diurnally, weekends, etc... and gradually fine tune these settings.... ​ Now, what you determine this week, may change in July... or November... simply because the total environment changes...
 +
 +**You WILL have junk**, or nearby cells, that may at times create too many signals, or activate a temporary '​interference'​ situation.. the system is designed to do that... if they'​re temporary, great... accept it, and move on... leave stuff alone... ​
 +Junk signals are ok... the server knows the difference... even if Impulse triggers, and the noise is sent... you just don't want Noise controlling your system... remember "​lightning does the work"​... ​
 +You may no longer detect signals in California... so what??? We've other stations to do that... it's the '​NETWORK'​ doing what it's supposed to do...there'​s no '​competition'​ between stations... or shouldn'​t be... heh... every environment is different, at different times, and scenarios.
 +Later on, you might experiment with Automatics... but you're going to be chasing ghosts if you operate that way while establishing you ambient operating baselines,​... wasting your time, and peace of mind.  Over the years I've experimented with the autos... and determined that in my environment they are basically worthless for consistent operation.... that is NOT true for many stations, but you may very well be a member of the "Cutty Sark Sailor Manual Mode Mob"​......
 +
 +===== How do you know station is working at optimal performance?​ =====
 +
 +original source (([[https://​forum.blitzortung.org/​showthread.php?​tid=3166&​pid=21996#​pid21996|]],​ Egon))
 +
 +Here are a few words to adjust the detector using the following graphic.
 +
 +[[https://​map.blitzortung.org/​statistic_1.php?​|]]
 +
 +See here for the parameters: [[https://​forum.blitzortung.org/​showthread.php?​tid=3144|]]
 +
 +The white curve:
 +The white curve shows the absolute number of signals sent over the past two hours. The scale is on the right side of the table. The value is normally between 100 and 10000. With high values (> 8000) there is usually a fault, see also the explanation of the red background lines. In the event of interference,​ set the gain lower or set the threshold somewhat higher (150mV)
 +
 +The yellow curve:
 +The yellow curve shows the relative number of signals sent that were accepted after simple checks. Here it is checked whether the signal is actually a pulse. The yellow curve should mostly be over 80%. Otherwise, the signal / noise ratio is either too small or the signals have no pulse shape or are superimposed too strongly with other signals. If the yellow curve is low and the number of signals is high, then usually only noise is received. Set the gain somewhat weaker or set the threshold somewhat higher (150mV). Reposition your antenna to a different location to compare the different locations.
 +
 +The green curve:
 +The green curve shows the relative number of accepted signals that could be assigned to the localized lightning strikes. This should be at least 10%, the more the better. If the thunderstorm is very far away, high values cannot be reached here. However, if the green curve is always zero, then the received signals are exclusively noise with a pulse shape and not flash signals. Please check your antenna system and location.
 +
 +The blue curve:
 +The blue curve shows the relative number of assigned signals that was actually used for the calculation. Only a suitable selection of the assigned signals is used for the actual calculation. If the blue curve shows high values, your station is extremely important at the moment for calculating the lightning strikes of the current thunderstorm. In general, the blue curve will always show something when the green curve shows something. If the blue curve shows nothing, even though the green curve has high values, then this is not a problem. In these cases, you just have to wait until the thunderstorm is in a reception group that you cover better than the other stations.
 +
 +
 +The vertical lines indicate error situations. The most common errors are bad GPS (blue) and interference (red). If the GPS is poor, you should check the GPS antenna. In the case of interference situations, you should observe whether you appeared regularly at certain times. As a result, the sources of interference can often be localized, e.g. Christmas lights after dusk. Note that you can display the graphic up to the minute grid.
 +
 +Another basic thing: Do not operate your detector permanently in automatic mode, but always in manual mode in the long term. In order to find the correct amplifier setting for trouble-free operation, you have to watch your station for a long time, during thunderstorms and without thunderstorms. Leave the threshold in the range 100 to 150 mV. It is more appropriate to work with a lower threshold (100mV) and a lower gain.
 +
 +Single numerous indices about the efficiency or effectiveness of the detector have a high entertainment value (after all, our hobby should also be fun), but are not well suited to adjust the station. I will show you examples of well-tuned stations and stations that are not so well tuned.
 +===== What are the most important settings in the system interface? =====
 +
 +The single most important thing is the [Apply] button. Press it when yoiu changed a setting and you want it to become active. The second important thing is the [Save now] button. Press it if you want the configuration survive a reset of the controller.
 +
 +==== You power on for the very first time ====
 +
 +Settings::​Main::​Remote Control
 +  * Mode: Automatic Mode
 +    ​
 +==== As soon as you saw your station being active on LMO ====
 +See [[https://​www.lightningmaps.org/​|LMO]].
 +
 +Settings::​Main::​Remote Control
 +  * Mode: Manual Mode
 +
 +Settings::​Main::​Tracker
 +  * DSP Frequency Filter: off (doesn'​t work as of now with FW 9.1)
 +  * Auto Adapt to Noise: off - You may want to play with it later.
 +  * Auto Amplitude Filter: off - You may want to play with it later.
 +  * Number of Samples: 512 - Don't touch it! Shall be the same for all controllers in the network.
 +  * Samples before Trigger: 256 - Don't touch it! Shall be the same for all controllers in the network.
 +  * Ignore Signals below Threshold: 100% - there are different opinions i.e. 10%
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Network::​IP Configuration
 +  * DHCP: on - keep it enabled even if you do not intend to use it. The day will come where you are happy it works.
 +  * Static IP: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it.
 +  * Static Netmask: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it.
 +  * Static Gateway: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it.
 +  * Static DNS: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it or enter 8.8.8.8.
 +  * MAC Address: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it. You may want to note it down. Sometimes it can help identifying the device in the network. I.e. the router keeps track of MAC and IP address pairs.
 +  * Static IP: - If you don't know the meaning, don't touch it.
 +  * NTP Server: off - If you want to use the GPS time as time source in your network, you may want to enable it.
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Network::​ Web Interface
 +  * Need authentication:​ depending on your security needs
 +  * Username: depending on your security needs
 +  * Password: depending on your security needs
 +  * Allow guest access: depending on your security needs
 +  * Port: 80 - 80 is the standard port for http. If you change it you need to access the controller differently. I.e. with port 8080 as, http://​blitzortung:​8080/​
 +  ​
 +Settings::​GPS::​GPS Module
 +  * Baudrate: 115200 - Select the highest speed your GPS module allows.
 +  * Always init on boot: off
 +  * No automatic init: off
 +  * Use SBAS: off - You may want to play with it later.
 +  * GNSS: GPS - GPS is the time source of the Blitzortung system. Additional systems are optional. Depending on the FW of the GPS controller some GNSS systems may not be supported.
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Amp 1::​Parameters
 +  * Channel A/​B/​C::​Status:​ '​Disabled'​ if no antenna is connected, '​Don'​t send' while playing with the settings, '​Normal'​ to send data to the Blitzortung server.
 +  * Channel A/​B/​C::​Gain:​ Start with a low gain, preferably the first of the two factors is the higher one, the second the smaller one. Increase the gain until you see a noise level of 20 to 25 mV on the Signals page.
 +  * Channel A/B/C: HP off - You may want to play with it later. Note: HP on multiplies the gain by a factor of 4.
 +  * Channel A/B/C Threshold: Start with two times the noise level you see on the signals page. You may want to play with it later.
 +
 +Settings::​Amp 1::​Filters  ​
 +  * Channel A/B/C Filter: Disabled - If you need it, enter a value between 25 and 300 kHz and enable it.
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Amp 2
 +  * analog to Amp 1
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Sampling::​A/​D Converter
 +  * Samplerate: 500 kHz - Don't touch it! Shall be the same for all controllers in the network.
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Sampling::​Nuzzer
 +  * any setting: As you like. Off may be the better option as it does not need processing power.
 +
 +Settings::​System::​System  ​
 +  * Voltage Check: on
 +  * CPU Sleep: on
 +  * Flash Prefetch: off
 +  * USB Virtual COM Port: off - Unless you want to see log messages sent through the micro-USB connection.
 +  * Daily Reboot: empty
 +  ​
 +Settings::​System::​Debug
 +  * Debug *: off - If you are interested in a certain type of messages, enable it.
 +  * Hide Hardfaults: off
 +  * Syslog Server IP: empty - Or an IP address of the syslog server the debug messages shall be sent to.
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Actions::​Actions
 +  * Action 1..5, Name: empty
 +  * URL: empty
 +  ​
 +Settings::​Alerts::​Lightning Alerts
 +  * Alert1..2: Min.Strokes:​ 0
 +  ​
 +Tools:​Buzzer
 +  * disabled
 +
 +===== On the signals page, whenever a signal is triggered, LP (or similar) flashes up. What does this mean? =====
 +
 +L = Signal is below the threshold\\
 +P = Signal is below threshold * adjustable_percentage\\
 +S = Spike detected\\
 +M = Amplitude too high (currently not enabled)\\
 +A = Automatic filter by amplitude\\
 +
 +These are '​automatic'​ filters and are always on. If a channel is marked red, then it might no be used for sending. Only if the time above the graph is red, the whole signal won't be sent. Some filters flags like "​L"​ or "​A"​ must be present on all channels, so that a signal won't be sent ("​AND"​ condition). Other'​s,​ like "​S"​ need only one filtered channel, and the whole signal won't be sent. 
 +===== On the signals page, what is the meaning of the dotted horizontal lines? =====
 +
 +Those lines are the noise levels.
 +===== Should I use the optional low-pass filters? =====
 +
 +First answer: No.\\
 +Second answer: No, even if there is i.e. a relative strong and constant 77 kHz signal from DCF77. Most likely the system performance is still better when the LP is inactive.\\
 +Third answer: If you have a dominant noise source at a frequency above 25 kHz, you may want to enable the LP filter with a frequency of 25 kHz or higher.
 +
 +===== How do I solder the low-pass filters? =====
 +
 +See [[en:​hardware:​blue:​controller#​digital_filter_option|Digital Filter Option]]
 ===== What is the detecting range of a station? ===== ===== What is the detecting range of a station? =====
  
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 station usually overrides. Even a very low pre-discharge will cause a very high signal strength because station usually overrides. Even a very low pre-discharge will cause a very high signal strength because
 of its low distance. of its low distance.
 +
 +===== What antennas should I have? =====
 +  * The GPS antenna is a must have.
 +  * The [[en:​hardware:​antennas:​e-field|E-field antenna]] is optional. It is pretty fast to make. Just get e.g. 10 cm of a 1 mm² to 2.5 mm² wire and you are done.
 +  * The [[en:​hardware:​antennas:​h-field|H-field antenna]] is optional. If you go for this option, you may use [[en:​hardware:​antennas:​h-field:​loop|loops]] or [[en:​hardware:​antennas:​h-field:​ferrite-rod|ferrit rods]]. Either two at 90° or three at 60°. For ferrite rods there is also an option with three perpendicular.
 +
 +You need either one of E-field or H-field antenna. You can also use both.
  
 ===== Why do we need a GPS? ===== ===== Why do we need a GPS? =====
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 of the site is a pleasant side effect of GPS devices. of the site is a pleasant side effect of GPS devices.
  
 +Your system WILL NOT send if GPS does not lock in properly. Data will be bad. The "​availability"​ on the status page needs to reach 95% ... it may take several minutes. It is locked when you get a 1pps signal under most conditions.
 +
 +FIXME: Is 95% the correct value for the required availability?​ Is it different for RED and BLUE?
 +===== Can I use a different GPS module? =====
 +
 +Yes, you can try other modules with serial interface and 1PPS signal, but we cannot support it. Don’t
 +use modules for //GLONASS// or //Compass// as they have other time bases. The European Galileo might
 +work in the future, as it’s clocks are synchronized with GPS.
  
 ===== Where should I place the GPS antenna? ===== ===== Where should I place the GPS antenna? =====
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 navigation system. navigation system.
  
 +===== Where should I place the E-field antenna? =====
  
-===== Can use different GPS module? =====+It should be placed high and far away from electrical installations. 
 + 
 +===== Where should ​place the H-field antenna? ===== 
 + 
 +Magnetic has no need to be placed high since the magnetic field is not easily attenuated. They must be minimum some meter from other electrical installations - In the garden just above the ground is ok, or attic, or balcony. 
 + 
 +===== How should I align the antennas? ===== 
 + 
 +The ferrite antennas do not require alignment. However, the two antennas should be placed horizontally 
 +(parallel to earth surface) and perpendicular to each other. Such setup covers all directions 
 +equally. The direction of the signals is not determined, only the exact time of the signal arrival is 
 +recorded and used during data processing. 
 + 
 +===== How do I check for noise and why should I? ===== 
 + 
 +FIXME add content 
 + 
 +See discussions here: [[http://​www.wxforum.net/​index.php?​topic=20439.0|Interference and Noise]] 
 +===== How do I hunt for noise sources? ===== 
 + 
 +FIXME add content 
 + 
 +===== What are these funny wiggles before/​after my signals? ===== 
 + 
 +Compression artifacts.\\ 
 +In order to save bandwidth the analog signal is (optionally) compressed before sending it to the Blitzortung server. This compression is lossy. The server "​restores"​ the noise as a certain number of samples with a min and max level as zigzag. 
 + 
 +If the data compression is enabled... you won't see it on your local signals page, but it is often visible on your station signals page on the server, if the feature is being '​shown'​... it looks like a series of 'hash marks' or '​interference'​ obscuring portions of you '​server'​ displayed signal... that data is 'not used'.
  
-Yes, you can try other modules with serial interface and 1PPS signal, but we cannot support it. Don’t 
-use modules for //GLONASS// or //Compass// as they have other time bases. The European Galileo might 
-work in the future, as it’s clocks are synchronized with GPS. 
  
 ===== Can I get the source code for the Firmware and the layout data of the PCBs? ===== ===== Can I get the source code for the Firmware and the layout data of the PCBs? =====
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 source. Every help here would be appreciated. source. Every help here would be appreciated.
  
-===== How should ​align the antennas? =====+===== Where can find the schematics for the main board and the pre-amplifiers? =====
  
-The ferrite antennas do not require alignmentHowever, the two antennas should be placed horizontally +[[http://en.blitzortung.org/​Compendium/​Hardware/​|Hardware Compendium]] 
-(parallel to earth surface) and perpendicular to each otherSuch a setup covers all directions + 
-equally. The direction of the signals is not determined, only the exact time of the signal arrival is +===== Are the servers up and running? =====
-recorded ​and used during data processing.+
  
-===== Is it possible to disable this big red blinking LED on the Discovery board? =====+The main thread about this topic in the forum is [[https://​forum.blitzortung.org/​showthread.php?​tid=2699&​pid=19116|Machine Room]]. For explanations and questions regarding server and service states, go there.  
 +There you can also find the links to the Service Monitor and the Server Monitor. 
 +===== Is it possible to disable this big red blinking LED on the Discovery board? ​(System RED) =====
  
 Unfortunately not. It is attached to the on-board programmer and cannot be accessed by the CPU. Unfortunately not. It is attached to the on-board programmer and cannot be accessed by the CPU.
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 to time to improve the system and to add new features. If you have own suggestions,​ then you are to time to improve the system and to add new features. If you have own suggestions,​ then you are
 welcome to tell us about them, so we could integrate them in the next release. SMD versions of the welcome to tell us about them, so we could integrate them in the next release. SMD versions of the
-PCBs are available with System ​BLue.+PCBs are available with System ​Blue.
  
 ===== Is it possible to build such a hardware with RaspberryPi,​ Arduino or similar? ===== ===== Is it possible to build such a hardware with RaspberryPi,​ Arduino or similar? =====