Just a quick mention… I hooked my wireless router to solar power and it has been running well for over 9 months now, today I connected my Purple Air to it and they are both running off solar power. I am amazed really, so now you can basically take your purple Air and put it anywhere in the world as long as you have cellular connectivity. The nice thing is that it was inexpensive (I thought so, around $200.00 not including the Purple Air) so not bad. Just wondering what you think, silly idea or something the community might use?
Brad, this sounds like a great idea. I’d love to hear how you set this up - it would provide a lot more flexibility on location.
Im going to try hard not to bore you silly but wanted to give you some quick background…
We are small telecom and have been dealing with Solar energy as it relates to cellular data using our commercial Router for over 10 years now (35 years in total just not all with Solar). About 7 years ago with got involved with the nonprofit Calgary Regional Air Shed Zone (CRAZ) which does some amazing work in the Province of Alberta as it relates to Air Quality.
A couple of years ago they started to replace their manual air quality pod system (they had to collect these pods across Southern Alberta once a month, then get them analyzed, a tedious and very expensive process) with the purple air monitors. They are a bit expensive initially but as you know Peter, really an incredible piece of kit. The ONLY drawback was they (CRAZ) couldn’t always find WiFi (internet) to attach to. There were many folks that offered their Home, Barn, or wooded area in which to place sensors however they didn’t necessarily want them using their WiFi and in some cases, CRAZ wanted the Purple Air in a place that simply didn’t have access to WiFi period! Because of our expertise in mobile data originally used with our oil and gas clients now used by campers and corporations alike.
(we have indoor and outdoor Mobile routers, similar to the routers in your home) and we can easily supply internet/wifi anywhere indoors or out that has a faint cellular signal. CRAZ approached us and we got involved, and I must admit after working with the Purple Air Monitor and CRAZ and I see how easy it is, (how essential it is) to put together and monitor… well Im just a huge fan. That said needless to say that was our first step into providing internet to the purple air unit and CRAZ.
The following is if you do not have internet/wifi at the area where you have the Purple Air set up OR you cannot utilize the wifi that is on location.
Ok so STEP 1. Get a mobile router, you can get our Shark LTE Mobile LC Router for $290.00 (or almost 40% off if you are a Government agency, not-for-profit, school etc. which is $178.00) or if you already have a mobile router we can send you a SIM card free of charge (for the data portion). The Purple Air takes very little data and the cost is somewhat inexpensive (consider what you think is inexpensive lol) $17.00 per month. I won’t go into why Shark data is better as it will sound like a commercial… more than it is now lol but our data is by far, in my humble opinion the way to go). If you have more than one purple Air you can utilize the same data plan (tether one data plan to an unlimited amount of Routers for an additional $10 per router). Obviously, the more purple Airs & Routers you have the less expensive it becomes. Simply connect the Purple Air’s wifi signal to your Router’s wifi and you are up and running.
Peter, you can purchase any Solar panel kit that can support both purple Air and mobile routers’ power consumption needs of about 5 amps. This is the critical step as you require steady power to run both units at peak times Peter. You can also purchase through Shark WiFi the OAK Kit (Outdoor Anywhere Kit) which includes both the Solar Kit, the Mobile WiFi Router, and all necessary wired connections for $285.00 plus shipping).
Once you have those two items, connecting the purple Air is easy. If you decide to do the do-it-yourself (DIY) thing I can supply you the diagram (no cost) that comes with the OAK kit. That way you will know which connectors go where.
Feel free to call me any time on my personal cell, 403-389-6863, Thank you so much for being interested. I truly believe this is a very worthwhile endeavor. Not sure if everyone should have a Purple Air maybe just one approximately every 300 meters (1/4 mile) or so lol.
All the best,