AutoTester Operation

To start up the AutoTester, use SSH to access the machine and enter the command:

cd ~
cd AutoTester/AutoTester

The program will start up.  If you have set the program to run at startup (see the install) instructions, then you can simply power up the processor.

From a web browser on a different machine, then enter the following URL (It may take a few seconds for the webserver to come up):

http://(addr of the autotester):8000

The first time you access the machine, (or use a different browser), it will ask for a user id and password.  They are “robo” and “AutoTester”.  The userid and password can be changed later using the administrative interface.  The port can also be changed.

Entering the password for the first time will bring up the user admin page where you can change user-ids and passwords. Click on “view site” in the upper left corner of the screen.

If all the hardware is working, then you will be greeted by the status page and a camera image of the AutoTester.  If it can’t find the camera, it will tell you.  The web interface is the interface into the machine.  You con’t need the SSH session to control the machine.  If you want to run the AutoTester so that it runs even when you disconnect the ssh session, then instead of:

screen python

When you start up the first time, you will need to test out and calibrate the machine.  On the top line of the webpage is the navigation bar (purple buttons).

They are:

  • Home – From this page you can queue tests and see the latest results.  You also have a live feed of what the AutoTester is doing, so you can see it work.
  • History – You can see the results from past tests.
  • Schedule – Schedule tests to run automatically
  • Test Setup – Here you can define tests (how many drops of this reagent, how many drops of that reagent, how long to agitate, etc.
  • Reagents – Here you setup what reagent is in each syringe
  • Control – This allows you detailed control over the motors, actuators, etc of the machine.  You can also launch diagnostics from the control screen
  • ColorSheet – Each colormetric test generally has a table of colors somewhere telling you how to read the results.  This page allows you to capture that table so that the machine can do the comparison.
  • Logs – View the information and debug logs produced by the machine
  • Admin – Set key machine parameters as well as manage users and passwords

If you haven’t done so already, hook up the hardware and restart the pi. Launch the AutoTester program.  The AutoTester will blink the LED lights 4 times when it starts up.  If everything is working ok, then you should see a live stream over the web interface.  If not, then check connections.

The first step is to ensure everything works ok.  Go to the Control page and test out the motors, valves, etc.  The stoppers won’t work well until the system is calibrated so it may think that the stoppers are engaged.  If the stoppers are engaged, then it won’t allow the carousel to rotate.  Lower the stoppers a few mm and then play with the carousel rotation.  Make sure all the motors, etc. work.

That’s all the setup that is required.  The AutoTester is preloaded with the tests for the freshwater API test kits and the Taylor reagents used for testing total alkalinity , but you can certainly add your own tests.  The reagents are set up in the carousel as follows:

  • A – water – Used for the drop diagnostic.  A normally isn’t used for reagents as it has no stopper.
  • B – API Ph
  • C – API Ph High
  • D – API Ammonia 1
  • E – API Ammonia 2
  • F – API Nitrite
  • G – API Nitrate 1
  • H – API Nitrate 2
  • I – Taylor R007
  • J – Taylor R008
  • K – Taylor R009
  • L – Not Used

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