Welcome to Amper! Before you get started installing your Amper devices, you should familiarize yourself with the various components, considerations and requirements for installation. In this article we will provide you an overview to prepare you for this process and ensure you are monitoring your machines in no time!
Amper Hardware Overview
Each machine will be monitored by its own individual set of hardware. Each set of Machine Monitoring equipment will be made up of:
- One or more Sensor(s)
- CAT5 Cable
- Power Supply
These components are assembled together and attached to each machine. Before we go over the installation process, lets take a look at the individual pieces.
To monitor your machines, Amper collects data on the electrical signals from the machines. The signals are collected by clamping a type of sensor called a current transformer to the relevant wire. To better understand which wire to clamp, see our article Sensor Choice and Placement.
In the picture above are the two versions of the Sensors we provide. The blue sensor (left) is used for wires with a maximum Amperage of 100A and the white sensor (right) is used for wires with a maximum Amperage of 600A.
The Sensors are plugged to a device called the Aggregator (pictured below). The Aggregator is responsible for collecting the signals from the Sensors before sending it to our system. This device is typically placed inside the Machine Power Panel along with the Sensors.
There are two different sets of ports on the Aggregator:
- 8 Sensor Ports on the top of the device to receive signals from the Sensors
- 2 CAT5 Ports on the side of the device to connect the aggregator to the Gateway
On the front of the aggregator you will see two see two sets of LEDs:
- A single LED in the bottom left corner to signal if the device has power and
- A row of LEDs at the top to indicate if a sensor is plugged into the port above it
In the picture above you can see that the aggregator's power light is illuminated as well as the LEDs for sensor port 1 and 2 showing that these sensors are properly connected.
The aggregator is connected to our Gateway device through a CAT5 cable. The Gateway is responsible for providing an internet connection to your devices and transmitting the collected data to the Amper system.
The picture above shows a powered on gateway. On the front are two LEDs:
- Device Status LED (Top Light)
- Connection Strength LED (Bottom Light)
The Device Status light will either be one of two colors to represent the current state of the device:
- Blue - Powered On
- White - Configuration Mode (Wi-Fi Gateways Only)
The Connection Strength Light will show the strength of the connection the device has to the Cellular or Wi-Fi network with the following colors to represent strength:
- Green - Strong Connection
- Yellow - Moderate Connection
- Red - Weak Connection
Amper recommends placing your gateways in a location that provides a consistant Green or Yellow Connection Strength LED. If your devices are showing a Red Connection Strength LED, try and move the device to a higher location or closer to your Wi-Fi access point.
The Gateway and Aggregator are connected by a standard CAT5e cable. Your Amper purchase will include CAT5e cables that we strongly recommend using for your installation. If a cable is damaged and want to get your Devices back on line as fast as possible, you may use your own CAT5e cable but we do recommend using Amper provided cables.
To power all of your devices, a power supply unit is attached to the Gateway. This power supply uses a 120V power outlet and can either be plugged into a standard wall outlet or to an outlet that is a part of the machine.
We are committed to getting you up and running with Amper as soon as possible. Properly installing the hardware on your machines is an essential part of that. What should you expect during this process?
Hardware Shipment Choices
Before we ship your hardware there are a few choices you need to make based on your specific factory's needs. The two choices you will have to make are the type of sensors your machine will need and the type of Gateways to use for connectivity. See the article Hardware Choices for information on the choices you will be making.
Wi-Fi Gateway Configuration (Wi-Fi Gateways Users Only)
If your factory opted for Wi-Fi gateways, you will need to configure both the Gateways as well as the IT configuration on your local network. Our articles Connectivity: IT Configuration for Wi-Fi Gateways and Connectivity: Configuring Wi-Fi Gateways will help walk you through that process.
Gateway and Aggregator Installation
Once you have your hardware and your connectivity method is sorted out, you will have to install the Amper devices on your machine. Our article Gateway and Aggregator Installation will guide you through the process to properly install the Gateway and Aggregator onto your machines.
Sensor Choice Placement and Installation
Once the Gateway and Aggregator are in installed, the final piece of hardware required are the sensors used to monitor the electrical current. Read through our article Sensor Choice, Placement, and Installation for guidance on installing this piece.
Installation Form and Calibration
After you are finished installing the hardware on all of your machines, you will have to provide us with a list of the specific devices attached to each machine along with some additional information. After this is sent over we can begin the process of calibrating your machines. For more information see our article Installation Form and Calibration.
Validation and Go Live
After the calibration is complete, we want you to have confidence in your data. With our data validation process you can have the piece of mind that your data is fully accurate and that you are ready to begin improving your operations with Amper. Additionally, your Customer Success Manager will reach out to begin the on-boarding process and provide you training and guidance when using Amper. See our article Validation and Go Live to see more about this step.
Schedule Time to Turn Off Machines
Installing your Amper hardware requires access to both the machine and the machine's power panel. Set aside some time to turn each machine off so you can open up the machine's power panel and avoid any disturbance to your machine operators. Opening machine power panels while the machine is running is dangerous to both the user and the machine and should never be attempted.
Plan Installation Time with Maintenance Staff
Since the installation will be done partially in the machine panel, it is essential to have a member of your team who in knowledgeable of the inside of CNC machines. In most facilities this will be a member from your Maintenance or Engineering staff. Make sure to discuss availability with the proper team member to ensure they are available to assist.