Collaborators: S. Cappuzzo, V. Francofonte, A. Mastrolia, L. Foresta Martin, R. La Porta, F. Di Gangi, L. Calderone
Laboratory of electronics
The laboratory of electronics deals with the design, realization and development of measurement tools, acquisition and data processing (fig. 1a: assembly and testing activities). The laboratory was realized in 2002 and primarily supports the volcanic and seismic surveillance and the geochemical research. The research activities and surveillance require either the creation of prototypes of tools specifically designed – able to work well even in harsh and hostile environments – or the development of programs on acquisition, transmission, storage, processing and data management.
The tools supplied to the laboratory are:
- Oscilloscopes (Fig.1).
- Measuring apparatus.
- Power Supplies (Fig.1).
- Function Generators.
- Calibrators and sensors of reference for gas (Fig.1).
- Gas Standards and certificates cabinets (Fig.2).
- Electronic and electromechanical counters (Fig.1).
- Tools for electrical assemblies (Fig.3).
- Machines for the production of electronic boards (Fig.4).
- Soldering systems (Fig.3).
- Software design and electronic, mathematical and automation modeling.
In particular, the laboratory deals with design and implement gages and portables necessary to sample and analyze gas and water and for measuring the mass flows and energy.
The design phase is carried out mainly with software ORCAD, Labview e Matlab. Different programming languages (C, VisualBasic, Python ecc.) on different platforms (Linux, Windows) are also used.(Linux, Windows).
The main product produced is the geochemistry station of the Section of Palermo (Figg. 5 and 7), used in geochemical monitoring networks in volcanic and seismic environment, either in Sicily, where there are about a hundred stations (plume networks, water, gases from soils and portable systems) or in other parts of Italy (Abruzzo, Umbria, Piemonte). The control unit allows you to record measurements of chemical and physical parameters in the atmosphere, in soil and water, storing data on board on a non-volatile memory, transferring data to the management software in the monitoring room of the Section. This was specifically developed by our team on Linux; it also provides to insert the same data in a MySQL database presenting them in the form of graphs.
Furthermore, prototypes of sensors for geochemical measures are developed (Fig.6).
Collaborations with various research and surveillance institutions, in many foreign countries, were also activated: Japan, U.S.A., Antilles, Congo, Vanuatu, Costa Rica, Antarctica, Reunion, Russia, Iceland, Nicaragua, Salvador, Colombia, Chile, Indonesia, Greece, New Zealand and Mexico. The laboratory takes care of the realization and the supply either of the geochemical stations or the data management systems, in addition to being busy with the technicians and local researchers training.
The electric, mechanical and hydraulic parts of instrumentation have been developed in collaboration with other laboratories (Mechanics, gas and water analysis etc.)