Quasar

The Quasar is an enclosure model focused on enabling outdoor, off-grid solar deployments with IoT gear. It includes all features up through Pulsar and a complete solar power management system, networking, and antennas. The enclosure has a redundant internet router(backhaul) that manages best link across Ethernet, Wifi and Dual LTE Celluar by adding one or two of your own SIM cards. Make sure to survey your deployment area for potential Wifi AP access and Celluar coverage via  LTE Coverage Map.  And also check the expected solar coverage in your deployment area -  Average Peak Daily Solar hours Map.  For solar, ideally at least 3.5+ hours of sun light on average per day over a 1 year period. That's assuming a 100w panel, and your system load is not more than roughly 25Wh. Here are the additional features of the Quasar:

  • You choose on optional battery option, you can choose none and provide your own 12V battery to this enclosure, battery dimensions must fit within 280Lx170Wx190H mm (11L x 7W x 7.5H inch) or smaller to fit with shelves fixed in their current positions. Most 12V 50Ah Lithium batteries will fit within that dimension. Or, you can choose the option to include the Powertaur Charge 12V, 120 Amp Hour, LiFe PO4(Lithium Iron Phosphate) Battery. This is the largest capacity battery that could could fit into the enclosure space, It has been custom designed and manufactured for that purpose. Storing a massive 1440 Watts capacity of power and a minimum of at least 2500 full charge cycles with more cycles very likely, in other words, this means the battery should perform consistently for at least 8+ years of constant usage. It utilizes an array of LiFe PO4 32700 cells and internal BMS for complete protection.
  • Set of 12AWG 6' Solar PV panel connector cables with MC4 connectors. The enclosure is shipped with the cables pre-attached and fused on 15amp. You connect the MC4 side of cables to your solar panel. 
  • The enclosure maintains two isolated circuits of power and networking: managed and unmanaged.
    • Managed circuit provides multiple power rails and a relay to toggle on/off remotely. There are 12V and 5V terminal blocks on the DIN rail with an extra open set of pos/neg connector ports for each voltage, (1) USB-C 5VDC cable, and a PoE(at/af) switch. You can use these managed power sources for your equipment placed inside the enclosure and the external power bulkheads on top of enclosure are on these managed rails also.
    • Unmanaged circuit has 12VDC power rail, ethernet switch, wifi/lte router, solar management, and no relay, it is always connected to whatever power is available from battery.
    • The isolation of 'managed' gives you the ability to remotely trigger hard power cycles against your entire application system for an effctive restart but still maintain connectivity/link to the enclosure at the same time, since the enclosure runs core networking on the unmanaged circuit. If you've ever maintained a remote system you know how valuable this dual plane can be for troubleshooting and potentionally fixing issues without needing to physically touch the device(especially when it's far away or just on your roof)
  • LTE/Wifi/Ethernet Router - This provides a fail-over redundant internet link via one of the physical WAN interfaces: Wired Ethernet from bottom of enclosure, Wifi from one external antenna connection on top of enclosure, 2 Celluar LTE channels from two 4G LTE external antennas on top of enclosure(each LTE channel uses a separate CAT1 SIM card which you would purchase and insert into the router). The router monitors all these WAN inputs and uses the one that has best internet link. all you have to do is plug in RJ45/Ethernet cable from your IoT device's network port to the Ethernet/RJ45 LAN port on this router and it will provide DHCP on a LAN network from there. Also comes with a Web Admin Portal interface so you can login and monitor network config and status in real-time.
  • POE injector - (4) active port switch, includes supporting both 802.3af(14watt) and 802.3at(34watt) output standards of Active POE(sensed) on each port. It will output 'af' or 'at' or none depending on what it senses on the other end of the line. The POE is routed to the ethernet bulkhead connector on top of enclosure and wired for surge protection.
  • Solar MPPT Charger - This provides the automated charging and discharging of the battery based on solar panel input and load side demand. It uses intelligent algorithms to re-charge the battery most effeciently while providing steady power for load side demand. It also measures all these energy flows and provides a Web Portal. You login and view real time metrics on the power your solar is generating, and how much load(power) your system is drawing. It also records these flows for historical reporting on performance. GPS location in also captured by this device and shown in the Web Admin view.
  • The MPPT Solar charger is connected to the battery through a blade fuse on the DIN rail and is also connected to the 12V load on DIN Rail through an additional blade fuse on the DIN rail. Provides redundant short circuit protections.
  • RF - the cabinet includes antennas:
    • (1) Wifi 2.4 Antenna
    • (1) Application antenna, a LoraWAN 915Mhz 6dBi antenna is provided, includes 12' of LMR-400 N-Male to N-Male cable. Any antenna can be mounted direct on top of enclosure to the N-Female bulkhead or use the LMR-400 cable for a run to different location such as on Mast Pole.
    • (2) 4G LTE Dual US/Global 2/5 dBi. You really only need one 4G antenna, unless you plan a very advanced deployment where you cable up two different antennas from different locations. The LTE router scans both antennas and chooses only one for best signal. So, you can re-purpose the second N-Female bulkhead initially used for LTE 2 here into a second application RF, replace LTE antenna with whatever antenna you want on the N-Female bulkhead and then disconnect the Male RF SMA cable inside the cabinet from the LTE router and connect to your application device.
    • (1) GPS

The interior spatial layout, you get 6.7x7.5x11 inches on the bottom and you get 7x3.5x5 inches in the upper left corner.

 The DIN Rail, showing the managed and unmanaged circuits.

Below shows the reserved empty shelf space where you can put your own IoT equipment such as a miner or IoT device. The space is approximately 7in long x 3.5in high x 5in wide.

A demonstration of the free space and capability to place your own IoT devices. Example of indoor helium miner, the RAK MNTD, placed into the cabinet using the provided hookups in the cabinet for 5VDC usb power, RP-SMA antenna, and internet via RJ45 ethernet.

Below shows the 12ft LMR Cable attached. You can then install your primary antenna(LoraWan, etc) remotely on mast pole, etc.

Below is the included parts kit, has the worm clamps, din rail tool, antennas, and IP-67 mated, field-installable connectors for ethernet, usb, 2-pole power.

The cabinet paired up with the optional Charge 120 Amp Hr battery.

An example of connecting a 3rd party Helium/HNT miner into the cabinet. The Quasar cabinet includes (3) cables to provide common interfaces usually needed by miners or any IoT device, a 5VDC USB C/3.0 power, Data over PoE+ ethernet, and RP-SMA male connector linked up to N-Female antenna bulkhead on top of cabinet, which for the miner would have the LoraWAN Antenna on top. This sequence of photos depicts usage of the cables to wire up a Sensecap indoor HNT miner. 

Power, Data, RF interfaces


Don't forget to wrap each antenna with supplied waterproof tape. 

Put it all together with other components for complete solar powered off grid deployment. Can see the LMR-400 12' cable is attached here on the Application RF antenna port, it goes up to a LoraWan antenna on top of mast.

Quasar cabinet shown paired up with antenna mast, 100w solar panel, and a non-penetrating roof mount.

Two Remote Management web applications are provided from their respsective HW products installed in the Quasar cabinet: 

The InhandGo LTE/WIFI/Ethernet router provides a remote management portal for real time reporting and administrative control of all networking of the cabinet. You register as a user on the InhandGo Portal, and Powertaur transfers ownership of your cabinet's router to your account.

The default configuration for WAN(Internet) redundancy has Wifi as Primary and LTE Cellular as Secondary interfaces to poll for internet access. You can change that order, and also swap in Ethernet as another interface, if you plugged in a Data Ethernet cable to the bottom of Cabinet. If using LTE Cellular, put a SIM card into the tray, and the router will auto-sense when it's inserted and try common carrier APN configs, so, it may be totally plug-n-play, if not, then you go into admin here to configure APN for the card.

The Victron Solar system provides a remote  management portal called VRM , You register as user on VRM Portal, and then register for the Serial Id from the equipment installed in the Quasar cabinet, Powertaur provides you the Serial ID installed at shipping time.  Once that registration for your account and Serial number is done,  you can login to the Portal and view real time data on GPS location, temperature, and power aspects like Solar PV generation, Load usage, Battery in/out, etc, and define Alarms(email) on those metrics. 

You can bring up remote admin console from the portal into the Victron Cerbo GX in the cabinet and drill into details on connected components, such as the MPPT charger, relays, I/O ports. Quasar cabinet utilizes this IoT HW/SW functionality in Cerbo GX by connecting one of the two Relays included on Cerbo GX and using it to provide remote control of the 'managed' 5VDC, 12VDC, and PoE rails in the cabinet. This Relay is 'NC' meaning it's normally closed, so, by default 'managed' power is ON, you can toggle the state of relay from remote admin, and it will then shut off power to all 'managed' circuits, then toggle the relay again, and it reconnects battery power to the 'managed' circuits, effectively performing a 'hard' power cycle of all application components remotely, you don't lose connectivity to the cabinet while this is done, since the non-app components are on 'unmanaged' circuit which does not lose power, this can be useful in troubleshooting application problems, sometimes a reboot is only way to get a device to come back up.

Remote admin console screen shot, toggling the Relay 2 to control the managed power between on/off.

The Victron Cerbo GX is an IoT hub, it offers many input interfaces for serial, digital I/O, and a relay. So, you can extend on that for building out IoT applications like sensor networks, remote switching, etc., which goes beyond the initial scope used in the Quasar cabinet of connecting the MPPT solar charger to the Portal, and remote relay. So that extensability is present if you want to tap into it.

The below screenshot is dashboard view on the Portal, is great for real time summary of your system performance. This example shows 59watts of energy flowing in(it was connected to 100w solar panel) at current moment, and net 49watts of that is being routed as charge to battery, and the other 10watts of that was diverted to the current load, which is all the devices inside and connected to the battery load side in the cabinet. 

After running the Quasar cabinet on solar for several months, we have profiled the performance and observed about 4W is the average total load drawn by the internal components installed in the cabinet, this includes the wifi/lte router, mppt charger, PoE, 5V transformer. When we plug in a sample IoT device like Helium(HNT) Miner into the cabinet, we've seen those usually pull about 5 to 6watts on their own, which sums up the total cabinet power drawn to about 10watts. So, with the PowerTaur Charge battery which holds 1440 watts, that means the system should remain powered on for about 144 continuous hours of no sun, about 6 days. 

Below are screen shots from the Portal, showing performance reports, and the last one is of the Remote Admin Console.