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Building a Better Mouse Trap for Continuous Battery Monitoring

By July 9th, 2019No Comments
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Allow me to boast.  As I write this blog, on a plane heading to Florida, a BatteryDAQ Sentry 0212S15 continuous battery monitoring system is in the overhead compartment above me…in my carry-on bag…business clothes included.  The complete battery monitoring system for 30x12V batteries, wiring and all, weighs in at an impressive 8.5 pounds and fits into an 18” x 24” box.

Tomorrow, I am meeting with a decision maker, and I will hand her the package that contains everything needed for installation.  No other comprehensive battery monitoring system manufacturer could even contemplate such a show and tell.

In this case, size matters. As the need for battery backup continues to explode, space is at a premium, whether it be on a rack, or inside a cabinet.

The continuous battery monitoring revolution has arrived, and BatteryDAQ is leading the charge.

But wait, I’m not done boasting yet.

For a continuous battery monitoring provider to survive and thrive in the coming years, it must meet certain design and functionality criteria.  Among the most critical elements that any battery monitoring solution must possess are:

•    Comprehensive & accurate
•    Compact
•    Flexible
•    Easy to install
•    Easy to understand
•    Affordable

Yes, I started and ended this list with “Affordable”.  Why?  Because battery monitoring has moved outside of the data center and is needed at remote sites with fewer batteries, but crucial importance.  In order to solve for the state-of-health (SOH) puzzle facing backup battery power across the globe, monitoring systems must, without argument, pass the budgetary requirements of the application.  If it does not, the game is over.  Nothing else matters.

Next, and just as important, but sometimes overlooked, is the requirement that any BMS worth implementing must, without argument, be comprehensive and accurate regarding the state-of-health criteria it measures and analyzes.  Why?  Because battery health can only be determined by a few measurements.  The big three are voltage, temperature, and internal resistance (conductance).  Many vendors will say they have battery monitoring, few actually do.  IEEE recommendations list the big three as core measurements.  If a solution does not, at a minimum, accurately measure voltage, temperature, and internal resistance, there is no price that is fair…even free.  Keep looking.

Compact.  This was covered in the paragraphs above, but it is remarkable how powerful the BatteryDAQ Sentry line of monitors are, considering their tiny footprint.  Remember, The Sentry 0212S15 is in my carry-on bag.

Flexible.  There are several battery applications and configurations in existence, some brand new, some inherited.  It is imperative any BMS is designed to meet the configuration, not the other way around.  Effective solutions should encompass the entirety of the applications, taking into account battery type, number of batteries, number of battery strings, and space.  Why?  Because they are out there.  It’s that simple.  BatteryDAQ has designed Sentry units for virtually every configuration known.  And, if the opportunity warrants it, we will design a system for it.  In other words, BatteryDAQ makes round pegs for round holes.

Easy to install.  Here is where technicians must be consulted and have a say.  Why?  Because they know what the deal is.  They are on the front lines every day, and they know the value of efficiency and time.  Any system worth installing, must be worth installing from a technician’s point of view.  Minimal wiring and worry-free maintenance are key.

As for the worry-free maintenance, Sentry units are robustly built to withstand a wide range of environmental conditions and prolonged use.  Some of our units using this technology have been in service for 20 years.  That means the monitor will service generations of batteries, making both initial installation and string replacement a deep concern; one that Sentry units conquer head on.  As for minimal wiring, remember, a complete set of wiring for 30x12V batteries is in my carry-on bag.  We want to show technicians the BatteryDAQ BMS.  They love the design and ease of use!

Easy to understand.  Oh, you mean you want to be able to use the data, not just gather it?  So many solutions become boat anchors because no one inside the end-users organization knows how to interpret the data and make it actionable.  This is the second half of the equation and cannot be overlooked or disregarded.  Why?  Because, if you implement equipment and software to solve for a problem, it is imperative it gets used.  It is perhaps the most frustrating purchase of all, when no one knows how to use something that was supposed to alleviate concerns and promote confidence.  Situations such as those diminish battery monitoring as a whole.

BatteryDAQ Sentry continuous battery monitors will communicate in any mainstream fashion.  Our data can be housed on inside servers, or via a secure cloud-based platform.  We can also communicate with other proprietary, 3rd party software already in use.  BatteryDAQ Sentry continuous battery monitors and software are engineered to easily mange from 1 to 1 million sites.  Again, it is part of our design and flexibility.  At BatteryDAQ, making continuous battery monitoring efficient, affordable, and enjoyable is what we do.

Now, for the best part.  Nobody likes a braggart, but everyone loves a problem solver.  The challenge posed to you is this: investigate, kick the tires, poke holes, and learn more about BatteryDAQ Monitoring Solutions.  It will be worth your time.

Learn more about our systems on our website,, or contact me directly via email at [email protected].  I’ll look forward to learning more about your needs.

Tom Shannon

Author Tom Shannon

Tom Shannon is the Director of Business Development at BatteryDAQ, LLC and has enjoyed success in both entrepreneurial and fortune 20 corporate settings. His expertise lies in establishing and nurturing business relationships. Tom has worked with some of the world's largest institutions in implementing strategies that solved for operational inefficiencies and maximized customer satisfaction and return on investment.

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