The Cloudmaster system gives Council staff total control of irrigation, floodlighting, BBQs, hot water heaters etc. at all the parks, reserves, playing fields, tennis courts and golf courses scattered around the municipality from a PC at a central depot or office, or using a portable notebook computer from their car or home. Regular ongoing events or once off casual bookings can easily be catered for using the 365 day clock or the single date function.
PC view of a Councils municipality showing remote parks, two with alarms.
Six distinct water programming methods allows simple or complex irrigation programs to be set up. Sensors such as flow, pressure, rain, frost and soil moisture can be utilised and detailed water consumption and run time reports and graphs can be generated at the central PC. Having central control means changes can easily be made to allow for daily weather and seasonal changes without the need for a site visit. This can result in significant water and man hour savings.
Typical Council oval showing floodlighting & irrigation regions, one of which is currently watering
User Activated Floodlighting
A Council can issue the users of the floodlights at playing fields & tennis courts etc. with a pin number or a uniquely encoded car alarm type keyfob transmitter. By sending an SMS from their phone or pressing the buttons on their keyfob transmitter they can turn the floodlights on and off themselves within their particular day and time slots. In this way the club decides when and how many lights they want on. If its raining and training is canceled then the lights don't come on and they don't pay. The system can send an explanatory SMS back to the club if, for example the playing field has been closed by the council, the user is attempting to use an invalid PIN number or the present time is not within their time window.
A bill for each clubs actual light usage is then automatically generated at the central computer. This reduces council workload and provides a much fairer 'user pays' service to the club. It also eliminates many problems such as vandalised switchboxes or coin in slot machines or lost keys. If not turned off by the user beforehand, the lights will extinguish at the end of the users time slot so they can never be on when they are not supposed to be.
Minimum cool down and warm up times can be set up so the floodlights cannot be power cycled quickly. This maximises the life of discharge type lamps.
SMS Control & Alarm Notification
Communications between PC and remote parks can be via dedicated radio telemetry link, telephone land line or local area network (LAN). However, we are finding the power of SMS makes the cellular CDMA network the communications medium of choice. Council staff can send control commands to any of their control units to override the irrigation or floodlighting program, disable the controller during rain or get a report of faults from any (or only authorised) mobile phone using SMS messaging from anywhere in the world. Furthermore, the unit can be set up to send an alarm SMS message to a mobile phone if a problem occurs, such as a fault in the wiring or a burst or blocked irrigation pipe.