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By Guy1000
I have been thinking about making a temperature monitoring system for our grain bins and was wondering if anyone has done something like this. I would be measuring the temperature with some kind of one wire temperature sensors and an Arduino or similar microcontroller. Eventually I would like it to be able to turn on fans and email me the temperatures. Any thoughts?
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By TS-Chris
Hi Guy1000, and thanks for the post!

Sounds like a neat project and onewire sensors sound like a good way to go since that would eliminate some points of failure.

I'm not exactly sure where in the bin you'd want to place the sensors or how you'd mount them but my guess is that they'd need to be mounted somewhere near the center of the bin. Depending on how much the grain 'sticks' to things, you might be able to mount them on the inside of a pipe that's suspended from the ceiling of the bin and run your wires inside the pipe. I'd just be worried if the grain stuck to the pipe, it might pull the pipe down as you empty the bin.

You might start with several sensors and just monitor those for a season just to make sure everything works correctly. Once that's working, then you could add functionality that turns your fans on and off and takes care of emailing you.

This is a neat project, and something you might be able to turn into a commercial product. Let us know how it goes!
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By Guy1000
Thanks for the advice! We already have some temperature cables made by OPI, and was wondering if anyone has been able to read them with an Arduino. I have found out so far that the OPI cables are 1 wire over parasitic power. But if the OPI cables don’t work I will just make my own. The cables I plan on making would be made out of a flexible plastic tubing with a small steel cable and the sensors ran they it. The tube would be capped and probably filled with some kind of silicone or something similar. Any suggestions?