We have just received the brand new boards! We have been working on this since last year. It took longer than we anticipated, because both Dave and I kept adding the features (“we want a laser,” “more LEDs,” “we need longer wavelengths,” “I found this cool LED. Can you use it?” & etc.). I truly appreciate the patience of Robert and Chris. We surfed through the wave of holidays, and finally, the initial trial electronics boards are here.
The new board is largely modified from the MultispeQ V.1 board, and the idea is that it will be used not only for the CoralspeQ, but also for other instruments currently under development. GrainspeQ is one of them.
It will still take time to build a complete CoralspeQ Beta. I hope I could update again soon.
I was hoping to have more specific information for you guys before creating this post, but we need to provide an update either way. Here’s the update:
The bluetooth module was mis-shipped again (yep, not kidding). So we managed to find a local supplier. This time we confirmed it’s the right part by ordering it and installing and testing it first. The expected delivery date for the full quantity we need is Feb 10th.
We are waiting on a response from the factory on when we fit into their schedule once those modules are delivered. We have been planning on late January, so they’ll need to adjust their schedule to get us in in mid February instead.
Everything else is in place to fulfill all of the pre-orders. Specifically, we have:
All parts except the bluetooth module
Factory calibration process for each device
Factory Assembly instructions
Other packaging (instructions, box, etc.)
Confirmed precision and range of key measurements on a a subset of 10 – 15 devices
Updated website and android app
As soon as we begin manufacturing, I’ll update the blog again with details, progress and pictures.
The MultispeQ ambient PAR correlates well to a LiCOR LI-250A PAR meter (LiCOR = MultispeQ * 0.95 + 3.99, r2 = .996, using 13 devices with 206 measurements). Devices showed some offsets from the actual PAR, but the noise at any given light level for each device is relatively low (high r2).
Validation included measurements in different spectral conditions: cloudy day, sunny day, LED, and fluorescent lights.
Additional spectral conditions (for example, inside a dense canopy) should be added to improve the quality of the validation.
The MultispeQ has to replicate ambient PAR inside the measurement chamber. This is quite tricky because there is some error in measuring ambient PAR and some error in converting ambient PAR to a defined LED intensity. Those two errors combine to increase total error.
The MultispeQ’s conversion of ambient PAR to LED light inside the leaf chamber is ActualPAR = 0.94*LEDPAR + 12.17 (r2 0.979) using 10 devices, across a range of spectral conditions and intensities, with a total of 253 measurements).
MultispeQ LED PAR tended to be shifted higher slightly compared to the actual ambient PAR.
Green, red, and blue LEDs (lights 1,2, and 4) correlated the best with the LiCOR LI-250A. The orange LED (light 3) performed the worst.
We’re going to continue to validate and check devices as we produce them, and post it through these same projects so everyone can see it. Expect another update regarding production status in the next few days.
You will find comparisons to commercial devices, calibration, and use and application in the field in collaboration with Beta test partners.
It’s important to note that this is paper is about the MultispeQ Beta device, NOT the MultispeQ v1.0 which we’re working on currently. The MultispeQ v1.0 will have its own publication. While the v1.0 has many improved features, better quality, and higher accuracy, the v1.0 is otherwise pretty similar to the Beta and this publication is a useful starting point for understanding either device.
Congratulations to Sebastian, Dave, Dan, Marty, Robert, Isaac, Donghee, Mitch, Kevin, and Pro for their hard work on getting this paper out into the world and the many sponsers which supported us along the way.
We are continuing to make progress on shipping the MultispeQ v1.0. We now have the first 20 devices from the factory. These are exactly (!) like the ones we’ll ship to those who pre-ordered. And we now have all parts in stock to complete all orders and then some.
We are now evaluating these initial 20 devices, adjusting our existing calibration routines, and field testing them to make they hit our high standards. We did as much of the testing as possible prior to receiving these 20 devices on hand-built versions with 3D printed cases, but due to small changes in manufacturing it wasn’t possible to finish all calibration routines and test all tolerances. Here’s two such examples: 1) 3D printed cases are notoriously slopped in comparison to injection molded ones, so mechanical components needs to be retested (like the bushings for the clamp mechanism); 2) the case material (ABS) has a different light absorptivity than the 3D printed cases we used before, and that changes the absorption and chlorophyll content calibrations.
In addition, we’re fixing some good old fashioned errors, like we ordered a bluetooth module but were shipped the wrong one (currently being reordered), and the USB 3.0 port wasn’t soldered on the board completely, causing confusion during initial calibration (a new soldering routine is being developed by the factory).
These aren’t excuses, but hopefully give you a sense of the kind of troubleshooting and persistence that’s required to get something that works consistently 🙂
Once we’re comfortable with these 20 devices, we will manufacture the remaining devices and ship. We have about 2 more weeks until the final parts we had to re-order come in, and it will probably take a few more weeks to complete the calibration and final testing before shipping. But we won’t ship anything until we’re completely comfortable with the device and it’s efficacy.
We apologize for the long delays, we know it can be both nerve racking and frustrating. We are getting there, and we think you’ll be happy with the result. Thanks for your patience and support!
Learn the MultispeQ v1.0 and the PhotosynQ platform.
This is a 3 day intensive workshop to learn and share best practices, experimental design, data analysis, and hardware modification on devices in the PhotosynQ platform with a focus on the MultispeQ v1.0 device.
Dates: Oct 14 – 16, 2016
Location: East Lansing MI
We already have a great group of attendees with backgrounds in plant breeding, plant science, arboriculture, and citizen science from academia and the private sector. Join us!
To keep the workshop small and personal, tickets are limited so sign up soon.