Project for Hire - Digital Timer

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by 1000Watts, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. 1000Watts

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 21, 2012
    4
    0
    Hi Everybody,

    New to this forum - which by the way is full of very knowledgeable people and great info.

    I am not sure if job postings are allowed - I have read through the rules & didn't see anything prohibiting this - but if they are not allowed, forgive me. I also don't see any threads specifically for job postings, so I thought this is the most appropriate section.

    Sooo....

    I'm looking for a really good and experienced freelance hardware engineer (and also software engineer) for a few projects that I have.

    The first project is a 6-channel digital timer (standard 24 hour/7 day timer, with 6 separate channels, each with a mechanical relay output). The brief project specification is below and a more complete specification is attached.

    There is also a substantial software component to this project, being the code/logic for the timer.

    Here are the specs:

    6-CHANNEL PROGRAMMABLE DIGITAL TIMER

    OBJECTIVE: Create a 6-channel programmable digital timer where the user can set multiple On/Off programs for each channel, based on a 24-hour day, 7-day week.

    The PCB assembly will be housed in a DIN enclosure with a front face measurement of 2.8” wide by 1.75” high. For reference, the enclosure size will be the same as a standard Siemens LOGO PLC.

    Features/specifications will include:

    - 99 Total available programs (On/Off Schedules)

    - Six separate channels

    - Microcontroller-based

    - Operates on source power of ~90-250VAC, with the objective that the unit can run on the North American power grid at 120VAC (One hot wire, one Neutral wire), or at 240VAC (two hot wires of different phase @ 120VAC each), or on power grids that operate at approximately 220VAC (One hot wire at 220V, one Neutral wire).

    - Mechanical relay outputs rated for approximately 8A @ 120V/240VAC. Preferably to use SCHRACK relay, part # V23061-A1007-A302-X113, as it has a proven reliability.

    -Non-volatile memory backup (no battery), that will store the timer’s programs during power failure, or when there is no line voltage applied to the device for an extended period of time.

    -A green LED indicator for each channel that, when lit, indicates the “ON” state for that channel.

    -Green backlit LCD display.

    -RF Shielding - As this device will be used in locations that may have very high RFI, it should be shielded, so the shielding will be part of the design requirement.

    - There will be an interface for programming the timer via computer or smartphone. (Bluetooth or USB). Hardware must be able to interface with a multi-platform application (iPhone, iPad, PC, Mac) for GUI-based programming of the timer. Programs can be uploaded, downloaded, stored, etc. from a device like an iPhone or computer. Also, through this connection method, software updates can be applied to the main logic chip.

    -World-class design quality. The circuit design, board layout, and component selection must be the best.

    -Ability to specify best-in-class components, while retaining cost-practicality so that production costs are reasonable when sourcing components in bulk.

    If you think you have the skills necessary for this project - and if it sounds interesting to you - please contact me. My location is Los Angeles, USA - but I'm used to working with people all over the world, as long as their English is good :).

    Looking forward to some feedback!!

    Thanks,

    Jayson
     
  2. cork_ie

    Member

    Oct 8, 2011
    348
    58
    It's a little beyond my capabilities I'm afraid but it sounds quite an interesting project. I would love to see it up here on the "Completed Projects" Collection when you have it up and running.
     
  3. elec_mech

    Senior Member

    Nov 12, 2008
    1,513
    193
    Hi 1000Watts,

    Welcome to AAC. This certainly sounds like a neat project, but note this site is geared toward beginners and intermediates in electronics. You appear to be looking for someone to produce a finished professional product. I assume this would also have to comply with electrical codes and designed to pass UL or a similar agency's approval. There are some incredibly bright, experienced and talented people here and someone here might be able to help, but I think you'll have more luck with a site geared more toward advanced electronics. There are a few, but only being little more than a beginner myself, I can only recall this one: http://www.edaboard.com/. Good luck.
     
  4. upand_at_them

    Active Member

    May 15, 2010
    246
    29
    There are several "projects for hire" websites where you can post your project and people will bid on it.
     
  5. takao21203

    Distinguished Member

    Apr 28, 2012
    3,577
    463
    I have used graphics LCD in the past.
    But I don't have resources to design/test RF shielding.

    Maybe consider to contact Futurlec, they have an engineering team suitable for projects like this. Not sure if they also offer to design microcontroller firmware.
     
  6. BMorse

    Senior Member

    Sep 26, 2009
    2,675
    234
    I actually already built a device very similar, with:

    4 AC Outlets that can be programmed to turn on and off at set intervals.
    4 Programmable External NO (Normally Open) Inputs, that can be linked to any channel for manual triggering of that outlet for use with water pumps equipped with float switches.
    1 AC outlet is capable of upto 15 Amps of current draw
    1 Digital Thermometer Sensor Interface
    1 Digital Humidity sensor interface
    2 12V Fan control for air flow control and for ventilation.
    LCD w/ LED Backlight, for user interface with 3 User buttons.
    2 "Moon Light" LED's with programmable intensity level.

    + it has a non volatile EEPROM for settings, with 100 year data retention without backup power!
    this device can be easily expanded for more channels.... and adding wireless connectivity should not be an issue.
    see the project here >> http://www.morse-code.com/id48.htm
     
  7. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
    5,435
    1,305
    To the OP- you didn't post the time frame and the budget?

    Do you have an idea of what a fully-pro design like that is going to cost? It won't be cheap.
     
    BMorse likes this.
  8. 1000Watts

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 21, 2012
    4
    0
    Hi BMorse,

    Your project sounds interesting. Do you have a picture of the PCB?

    Thanks,

    Jayson
     
  9. 1000Watts

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 21, 2012
    4
    0
    I'd like to have prototypes in 45 days and I do have a budget allocated. I'll discuss the budget when I find the right person(s), but suffice to say that I am committed - I realize this is a project that requires proper resources.

    Jayson
     
  10. BMorse

    Senior Member

    Sep 26, 2009
    2,675
    234
    Sorry, no current pics of PCB..... currently redesigning the whole thing to accommodate more functions for another person who is interested in the same type of controls for his indoor grow room, so I have to re-vamp the circuits to handle higher current loads for his metal halide and high pressure sodium lights.....
     
  11. 1000Watts

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 21, 2012
    4
    0
    you should just use the existing circuit relay(s) to trigger larger contractor(s) for switching the HID loads. Those HID lights will fry any ice cube type relays in a short time - even the ones rated for 30A.
     
  12. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
    5,435
    1,305
    I've seen similar complexity projects around $20 to $30 grand for engineering alone, is that within your "proper resources" allowance? It gets right up there if you want industrial and pro level safety, compliance, and comms protocols etc thrown in, and then your project also has quite a small physical size which eliminates a lot of display options.

    Also I think 45 days might be a bit optimistic too, unless just for a demo prototype. Getting casings injection molded will add a couple of months and the CADCAM for that might be another 20k.
     
  13. BMorse

    Senior Member

    Sep 26, 2009
    2,675
    234

    I am actually gonna replace the SCR's with solid state relays to drive 3 phase motor contactors to control the lighting...
     
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