Measurand's File Generator (formerly known as SAACR_FileGenerator) allows you to create programs for Campbell Scientific data loggers to record information from ShapeArray (SAA) devices connected to it.

In SAASuite 3.0 or higher, File Generator is launched by clicking the Configure Logger Program button.

Figure 1: Launch File Generator by clicking the Configure Logger Program button

Figure 2: The File Generator main window

Step 1 - Optional, Retrieve Settings From a Previous File  

Some settings can be retrieved from existing Campbell Scientific data logger program files that were created with File Generator (.cr8, .cr1, .cr1x, .cr3, .cr6, .cr300, or .crb files). This is often helpful when you are simply adding another ShapeArray to an existing logger configuration. To do this, click the Open button in the top right corner of the window, as shown in the Figure above, and select the desired file. 


Figure 3: Selecting an existing logger program file


File Generator will now be populated with project details pulled the existing program.

Figure 4: Details populated after selecting an existing file

Step 2 - Provide a Project Title

It is a good idea to specify a title or project name for your logger program by entering it into the Project Title field, as shown in the Figure above. This title will be written into the program. 

NOTE: When entering a title for your project, non-alphanumeric characters should be avoided. By default, File Generator will prevent the use of some characters (such as the comma); however, care should be taken with other punctuation characters. Some non-alphanumeric characters in the project title can cause issues with other software that works with the resulting data files.

Step 3 - Configure Preliminary Samples  

Preliminary samples are taken before the reading interval starts and are an initial check that everything is working properly. The higher the number of samples the more time it will take. The default setting for this is 5 samples. Setting the Preliminary Samples field to 0 will disable the collection of preliminary samples.

Step 4 - Configure the Reading Interval

The Reading Interval is the time between ShapeArray observations made within the program. The fastest (minimum) reading interval is 10 minutes. Going faster could cause the data logger to eventually crash. Units (Minutes or Hours) can be configured with the dropdown menu next to the Reading Interval text field, as shown in the Figure above.

Step 5 - Optional, Select SAAV Extend Site File

If you are generating a logger program for an SAAV Extend that has been lifted with added extensions, you must specify a site file that defines the order in which the extensions were added to the base array. To do this select the Add SAAV Extend button and then click the Select button. This will open a dialog where you can locate and select the site file. Once selected, click the Open button to continue.

Step 6 - Select the Logger Type

In the Logger Type dropdown list, select which data logger this program is intended for. The selection made will determine the file extension for the files generated. Due to the number of COM ports available on each type of logger, each logger supports a varying number of ShapeArrays)

  • CR800 creates a .cr8 file (support up to 10 ShapeArrays) 
  • CR1000 creates a .cr1 file (support up to 20 ShapeArrays) 
  • CR1000X creates a .cr1x file (support up to 20 ShapeArrays) 
  • CR3000 creates a .cr3 file (support up to 20 ShapeArrays)
  • CR6 creates a .cr6 file (supports up to 40 ShapeArrays)
  • CR300 creates a .cr300 file (supports up to 5 ShapeArrays with no more than 300 segments total)
  • CR350 creates a .crb file (support up to 15 ShapeArrays)

Figure 5: The Logger Type dropdown configures the type of logger for the program

Step 7 - Add ShapeArrays to the Project

Once you have input the project details, you can add ShapeArrays™, one at a time, to the project by clicking on the Add ShapeArray button. This process is repeated for each ShapeArray™ to be monitored by the data logger.

Figure 6. The Add ShapeArrays button is used to add ShapeArrays to the project

The Add ShapeArray dialog allows you to define the physical configuration that connects the ShapeArray™ to the data logger. You must configure the following fields and click the Add button for each ShapeArray™ you wish to add to the project.

Figure 7. Provide connection details for each ShapeArray to be monitored

  • Specify the COM Port to which the ShapeArray interface is connected on the data logger
  • Specify the Measurand interface to which your ShapeArray is connected in the Interface dropdown list. 
  • Enter the Serial Number for the ShapeArray.
  • In the AIA field, enter the number of ShapeArray samples used to compute an average reading using the Averaging-in-Array (AIA) feature of ShapeArrays

Step 8 - Generate the Program File

Click the Generate button to create the data logger file. You will be prompted to select a location to save the file and to provide a file name for the program.

WARNING: Older versions of File Generator created two files: a main program file and an SAA_Include file. If your version of File Generator created two files, then Measurand highly recommends upgrading to the most recent version of the software. The latest version produces only a single program file that has many optimizations and bug fixes over programs created with earlier versions.

Figure 8: Selecting a location and filename for the program files

Step 9 - Optional, Add Custom Code for Non-ShapeArray Sensors

If you need to log data from non-ShapeArray sensors, such as piezometers or strain gauges, you will need to modify the program created by File Generator to include code to collect and record the data. The program file should be edited in LoggerNet's CRBasic Editor to include the required code. The required code should be placed in the USER defined or USER program sections in the program file. These sections are delimited by START and END markers for ease of location. An example of one of these section is shown in the Figure below.

Figure 9: Custom code for non-ShapeArray sensors is inserted in specific locations in the main program file

Note: Measurand recommends consulting Campbell Scientific's support for assistance with the code required to log data from non-ShapeArray sensors.

Step 11 - Send the Program File to the Logger  

The file generated must be loaded onto the logger using either PC200W or LoggerNet. This is most easily accomplished using the Send Program page of EZSetup wizard in either of these programs.

NOTE: If you are reusing a Campbell Scientific logger previously used with other Measurand ShapeArrays, it is recommended that you remove any existing logger programs and Include files before you connect the new ShapeArrays. This is most easily accomplished by formatting the logger through LoggerNet's Connect application or PC200W's File Control option.

Figure 10: LoggerNet Connect's File Control window