Raspberry Pi, Edison or Something else for industrial IoT-ish project

Hi all,
I’m brand new here, currently kicking off a data acquisition and interpretation and communication project, and looking for advice on the best platform to base the prototype on.

We’re collecting data on agricultural equipment, then want to filter and process that data before sending the processed data out over http. Ideally, I’d also like to be able to use the same device to request and receive the interpretation of that data over http and display it visually to the driver of the equipment.

Specific requirements:

  • 6 Analog inputs - 5 hydraulic pressure transducers plus one rotary displacement sensor
  • 3 ‘Counter’ inputs - pulse/rev and pulse/cm measuring rotary speed and ground speed
  • Ideally would also like to be able to have GPS position as an input (I have read about RTK with Raspberry Pi - any experiences?)

The process, as I envisage it at the moment will involve:

  • Convert raw signals to physical quantities (ie 3.2v = 2500psi etc) at highish frequency (each channel ~1/second)
  • Keep a running/moving average for each channel
  • Transmit a moving average figure for each channel every ~5 seconds, or on a triggered event (eg threshold change in a value)
  • Display a summary (updated every ~5 seconds on a screen in the cab)
  • If possible, request the interpretation of the previously sent data from the cloud, and display this interpretation on the screen also.

I have been reading up on Raspberry Pi, and it seems that it could me made to do it with the assistance of readily available add ons (A2D converters etc). I’ve also come across information on Edison and PyBoard.

Any thoughts on which might be more suitable for this application. Also, any thoughts on whether any of these platforms could be used as a basis for initial low rate commercialization - or are they only good for prototyping?

Any thoughts or responses greatly appreciated.

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Hey Stoo,

Sounds like a great project! Most of what you’re doing only requires a couple of features, internet connection, a way to visually display data, and at least 6 analogue inputs. The counting that you’re looking at doing could be implemented either using software polling, or hardware timers. The platform I’d have to recommend would actually be the new Particle gear. There is a Wi-Fi board available, or a 3G board, and for what you want to do might be the way to go. We’ve got a bunch of tutorials up already for using OLED/LCD displays, and internet data logging functions.

Hi Sam.

Thanks for the very prompt response, much appreciated!

For my own interest, what is it about the Particle that would make you recommend it over the other options?



Hi Stoo,
Most of the features are mentioned in those articles, but having used Raspberry Pi, Arduino, and Particle myself, I would go to Particle for a number of reasons:

  1. It’s directly programmable via the cloud IDE which is amazing
  2. Same programming abstractions as Arduino which makes it incredibly easy to program
  3. It’s got an ARM Cortex chip on it with a 120Mhz processor so it’s got stacks of power
  4. Built in Wi-Fi or 3G connectivity
  5. If you go for the Wi-Fi option, the Particle Photon board is less than $50
  6. Stacks of I/O pins
  7. Plenty more reasons, but that’s the approach I’d take hands down, plus no software layers to go through to manipulate the I/O pins like you would have to do in linux on the Raspberry Pi, or similar platforms
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Thanks Sam.

Just ordered a Particle Electron


It’s one of my favorite devices at the moment, I’ve been hands on with it for the last few months, great bit of gear!