The New Generation IrriGRAY Graywater Controller is only a few weeks from release.
Updated: May 12
We all know what 2020, and 2021 were like. Making lemonade out of lemons, we decided to completely change our system controller.
While the previous Android based system controller was (and still is) way ahead of any other water-reuse controllers, adding new features was very slow, and the Google / android platform simply became unsuitable for 24 x 7 system control.
In 2019, we had begun exploring alternative controller technologies. We decided to base our design on the Raspberry Pi 3 / 3b mini computer. We had been keeping an early eye on Covid in January 2020, and prepared for an upside down year.
While supporting existing clients, we dedicated the next 24 months to designing our next generation controller.
Finally after all manner of non technical 'life' challenges, we are sending out the first of the new controllers next week. Over the next 2 months many of our customers will upgrade to the new controller, and of course all new systems receive the new controller.
So What's So Good About The New Controller?
It's fast. Very fast. It can accurately measure and track multiple water flow meters up to 200 gallons per minute. It also only takes 45 seconds from turn on to full automatic operation.
The touchscreen is bright - even in direct sunlight (or an opposing white brick wall) the screen is very usable. Tablets were notorious for requiring shade to be visible.
Automatic recovery from power failure. If the power fails, the system will stay alive for up to 30 seconds (onboard power storage) while important information is automatically saved to the storage card. When power comes back on, the system automatically self starts.
True multiple mode and automatic rescheduling. The new design automatically and continuously recalculates the optimum times and prioritization of graywater, makeup water, excess graywater, sprinkler cycle soak events, potable water only zones and add on water. This is important because irrigation event timing is highly dependent on outside factors such as air temperature, water use restrictions, water supply flow rates and pressure.
Equipment self diagnostics. In addition to quickly identifying the problem, replacement parts are color coded and can be installed in just a few minutes without special tools or needing a contractor.
Much faster product (programming) development. Our experience over the last 18 months is code development is at least 20 times fast with the Pi sub system than the previous Android / Java controller. We have a 'wishlist' that is over 2 years old, and many new features and options to be added. We expect to progressively add these during 2021. There is so much that our hardware can do - we have barely scratched the surface. Some of the new features coming this year: - Rainwater Storage Management - Ancillary water supply and pressure monitoring of additional pumps - 8 Customer relays that can be used for any purpose e.g., fountain pumps, outdoor lighting, extra pumps and so on.
We will save extra information and features for the official launch in several weeks. In the meantime I would like to thank our clients for great suggestions over the years, and the project team members around the world who have made this happen despite the challenges we have all faced.
We look forward to an amazing 2022, and wish our current and future clients the very best.
PS. We have been asked on a number of occasions whether we are confident of support by the controller manufacturer. I am the designer of the both the old controller (first released in 2013) and the new controller. We have our own development team including a highly experienced Electrical Engineer, a Software Developer who has worked for us for 5 years, with both our old and new controller, and also our own cloud server / monitoring system. In addition to assembling the controller, we also manufacture our own circuit boards, using our own PCB / SMT oven.. This means we are not reliant on any company as a core technology provider, and all support and product development is managed inside Water Renu.
VP Research & Product Design
Water ReNu llc.