Frequently Asked Questions

Our basic setup is rated by the wireless manufacturer for 1.2 km Antenna Line Of Sight, which in practice means about 300 meters with direct human eye line of sight, outdoors. Indoor distances are shorter. Placing the wireless gateway and SPARC boxes higher off the ground (1.5 m to 4 meters) helps.

For longer distances, you can extend the range by 300 meters with the ALS-REP1 wireless repeater box.

For the longest distances, the SPARC boxes and wireless gateway can be equipped with high range transmitters (in the kilometer ranges) depending on your geographical location and your country’s wireless band legal restrictions. Contact Algae Lab Systems for further information.

Yes, it can be used to control most PBRs and ponds.

All components other than the HubBox are intended for rugged outdoor use and are rated IP65 or better. The system, with connectors properly attached, is splash proof, water resistant, and heat resistant. The HubBox is intended to be used indoors or in a cabinet.

You can also consider using one of our ALS-VIS1 Visors to create a protected environment for the SPARC2 boxes.

We partner with various PBR manufacturers for a wide variety of PBR sizes and configurations ranging from tanks to tubulars to columns. Please contact and let us know what size system you are looking for.

Yes, we provide several communication options for interfacing to your SCADA and HMI systems, and we can also help you create an appropriate SCADA architecture if you do not already have one. Contact for more information.

For a fleet of PBRs or ponds, Algae Lab Systems will work closely with you to create a configuration of controllers that best suits your layout and number of grow areas.  Algae Lab Systems also provides central computer oversight support, enabling a central computer to aggregate all values from all systems in real time to a SCADA system.

Yes. you can keep adding SPARC boxes for each new pond or PBR, and updating the software only takes a couple minutes. Once your setup gets bigger, we provide central computer oversight software that will allow you to aggregate all data from all Boxes into a central SCADA system, with the ability for redundant backup.  Contact for more information.

Yes, you can add components until the ports are all used up, at which point you can add more SPARC boxes. The software display is easily updated for any new additions.

No, you choose what sensors and control modules you want, and we quote for only what you need. We do also have pre-defined packages though, see them in our Packages page.

Absolutely! Set up a control loop for your CO2 valve or anything else in a quick minute using our software. Check out the YouTube tutorial video.

When you open the AlgaeConnect software, the Setup page has a manual with a diagram on how to actually physically connect your devices.

We offer three types of Control Modules that connect between your device and the AlgaeConnect Boxes:

  • Relay boxes for on/off devices
  • 0-10 Volt analog outputs for variable input devices like light drivers
  • PWM outputs for direct brightening/dimming of LED bulb banks or speed control of motors.



Most of our sensors come in a ‘Process’ style, which means they have standard 3/4″ NPT threads on both ends of the sensor, and a “Lab Style” which means that you can connect them to our Hot Tap assembly, so that you can remove them from your process without emptying the water.

The AlgaeConnect system is very simple to set up and operate. You can have a typical system with 4-6 sensors fully running and measuring solutions in less than hour, including the graphing and all software features.

Check out our YouTube tutorials on how to get started with adding SPARC devices, connecting sensors, calibrations, data retrieval, and other useful things.

Typical sensors used are pH, temperature, dissolved oxygen, nitrate, algae density, light, and water level. Others are, ammonium, solar PAR, conductivity, and occasionally some others.