GrowControl™ University

GrowControl™ GCX control systems can monitor and manage all aspects of your bulding's growing environment including climate control, lighting, carbon dioxide, irrigation, nutrient dosing and more. Selecting the right sensors and output devices can be challenging when you are not familiar with the many different products manufactured by Agrowtek. The aim of this short "university" is to familiarize the user with GrowNET™ components utilized for common applications.

Get Educated on GrowControl™ at 'G.C.U.'!

GCX vs GCX+

GCX vs GCX+

The difference between the GCX and GCX+ models is in the screen size, and number of devices supported by the controller.

Display Size
GCX models are equipped with a 10.1" display while GCX+ models are equipped with a 15.6" display.

GrowNET™ Device Count
GCX models support up to 100 GrowNET™ devices; GCX+ models support up to 200 GrowNET™ devices.

GrowNET™ Devices & Connections

GrowNET™ Devices & Connections

Agrowtek manufactures a variety of "GrowNET™" devices for the GrowControl™ GCX system including sensors, I/O modules and peristaltic pumps.

Devices are connected using standard 'cat5' cable with RJ-45 connections for easy installation.

GCX and GCX+ controllers have eight (8) or sixteen (16) GrowNET™ ports respectively, so how is one going to connect 100 or 200 GrowNET™ devices? The solution is HX8 hubs.

HX8

HX8 hubs expand one GrowNET™ port into eight more ports and provides power to the ports. HX8 hubs can also be daisy-chained or starred with a central hub connecting to hubs in different rooms. Hubs enable superior communication with devices while reducing cable runs and simplifying installation.

Environment Sensors

Environment Sensors

One or more sensors may be located in each growing environment to monitor and control temperature, humidity, ambient light, and CO2 ppm (optional.) Agrowtek's climate sensors are assembled in USA with precision digital sensor chips and high quality NDIR CO2 sensors. Conformal coatings protect the circuit board from moisture and dust build up. All sensors feature an aspirator fan with servicable air filter for fast, accurate sensor response and and white reflective powder coat paint to reduce solar radiation effects.

SXC

SXC sensors are the standard in the industry for hanging in canopy environments and include a hanging bracket. Accurate and reliable, there are thousands of SXC series sensors in operation today.

SXC+

SXC+ sensors are also designed for canopy hanging and feature an on-board display with sensor readings and historical data. Display can be set to turn off the back light after a time delay.

SXE

SXE sensors are designed for wall mounting and inculde a display.

HVAC & Humdity

HVAC & Humdity

Standard HVAC systems are controlled using dry-contacts in the same fashion as traditional wall thermostats which switch the low-voltage fan, heat, cool, etc. signals.

Industry humidifiers and dehumidifiers include a low-voltage control interface and connect in the same fashion as HVAC equipment.

Continuous power is provided to the equipment and a low-voltage dry-contact control signals the equipment to operate. This allows safe and low-cost control of the unit while maintaining the built-in control features of the equipment.

DXR6

DXR6 dry-contact din-rail modules are an economical option intended for switching six (6) low-voltage AC control signals typical in HVAC and RH systems.

RD8i

RD8i dry-contact modules are suitable for switching eight (8) control signals and loads up to 10A@120Vac and can be used to operate typical low-voltage HVAC signals.

Lights & Dimming

Lights & Dimming

Lighting can be controlled in two different ways: 1) discrete on/off control of power to the light fixtures using contactors, and 2) analog dimming using 0-10Vdc control. Discrete control is the traditional method used with non-dimmable fixtures. Increasingly, fixtures include a dimming input for a standard 0-10V signal which allows the fixture to be turned on and off as well as dimmed by the low voltage control signal.

RD8i

RD8i dry-contact modules feature eight heavy-duty relays and can be used to operate heavy-duty contactors at line voltage (120vac) for traditional lighting load control.

DXV4

DXV4 analog 0-10V dimming modules feature four independent channels of 0-10Vdc control. Each channel is capable of driving up to 50 standard light fixtures.

CO2 ppm Injection & Exhaust

CO2 ppm Injection & Exhaust

CO2 injection can be controlled by any discrete type of output module. The most common and convenient method for controlling CO2 is with a single-outlet relay or a quad outlet-relay.

RX1i

Single outlet relay module allows convenient control of a 120V outlet typically required for control of CO2 regulator valves or burner units.

RX4i

If multiple valves are required (to operate different zones) or if other 120V equipment needs control in the same proximity, the RX4i can offer cost savings when controlling multiple devices.

Irrigation

Irrigation

Irrigation can be managed and controlled by GCX systems using standard dry-contact relays and a 24VAC irrigation power supply. Any standard solenoid operated irrigation valve can be operated with a dry-contact.

RD8i

RD8i dry-contact modules feature eight heavy-duty relays and can be used to control up to eight (8) 24Vac irrigation valves. A 24Vac irrigation transformer is required to operate the valves.

Exhaust & HAF Fans

Exhaust & HAF Fans

Exhaust fans and HAF fans can be connected in various different ways including standard discrete on/off control or variable speed control. Discrete operation can be managed by a dry-contact module or a transistor DC-output module. Variable speed may be as simple as two discrete controlled stages on a two-stage motor. Other motors may be capable of being driven by a motor VFD (variable frequency drive) to control the speed. VFD's can be interfaced with either PWM or 0-10V control.

RD8i

Small fan loads (<8A/120Vac) such as HAF fans or a few exhaust fans can be driven directly through the contacts of the RD8i. For larger loads, the RD8i can operate contactors in a panel to control the fans.

DXO8

DXO8 modules can be used for discrete operation of fans and other equipment when used top operate DC coil relays and contactors in a load panel.

DXO8 modules are also capable of driving PWM (pulse width modulation) signals (first six outputs only) for variable speed control of PWM based VFD controllers.

DXV4

VFD motor controllers requiring a 0-10V analog signal can be operated with the DXV4 0-10V module. DXV4 modules feature four channels of 0-10V control.

Evaporative Coolers

Evaporative Coolers

Evaporative cooling systems (swamp coolers) are common in greenhouses in arid regions where they are effective and economical. Control of evaporative coolers often involves fans, water valves and louver motors.

RD8i

Evaporative cooling systems can be controlled with a contact for water and a contact for fans. A contact for louver motors may also be utilized if required. Most components can be driven directly through the RD8i contacts.

Shade & Black-Out Curtains, Walls & Ridge Vents

Shade & Black-Out Curtains, Walls & Ridge Vents

Control of a reversible motor is required to open and close ridge vents, roll-up vents, and shade or black-out curtains. MX motor controllers operate reversible motors and can control the motor position based on time of travel.

MX1i

Available in two models for AC or DC motors. MX1 motor controllers switch an external power source to the motor to operate it in the forward or reverse direction. Internal position tracking monitors position (0-100% open) based on user set 'total travel-time.' A knob on the front of the MX1 allows manual override away from the main controller.

Relays & Contactor Panels

Relays & Contactor Panels

Electrical load panels are common in greenhouses and indoor buildings for controlling high current or high voltage electrical loads such as lighting, ventilation and circulation fans, large pump motors and other equipment. Agrowtek manufactures a variety of I/O modules and relays suitable for interfacing with relays and contactors in a panel. The model chosen will depend on the type and voltage ratings of the contactor or relay magnet coil.

DXO8

Designed for driving DC coil relays, SSR's (solid state relays) and DC coil contactors. DXO8 modules feature eight (8) DC outputs capable of driving up to 1 Amp each. An external 12-24V DC power supply is required to operate the outputs.

DXR6

Designed for low-voltage, low-current signal switching, the DXR6 can operate up to six (6) AC or DC coil relays and contactors with coil ratings up to 1 Amp @ 24VAC/VDC.

RD8i

Designed for medium voltages and current loads, the RD8i can switch up to eight (8) relays and contactors at line voltage (120VAC) which is common on larger contactors and systems without a 24VAC control transformer. High current 10A rating per point allows multiple contactors to be driven from a single relay point.

Custom Sensor Inputs

Custom Sensor Inputs

A common requirement in controls systems is the capability to integrate custom sensors and inputs. DX series modules feature inputs capable of detecting an on/off (discrete) state of a sensor, or the analog (variable) output of a sensor.

Discrete sensors are typically float switches, motion sensors, door switches, push buttons, smoke alarms, leak sensors, etc. These types of sensors typically employ a 'dry contact' allowing power to flow from one lead to another when the sensor is triggered.

Analog sensors feature a variable output in terms of mV or mA and can be scaled to a corresponding value in the controller to be used within control logic.

DXI8

Eight input module for discrete sensing or analog sensing with 0-5Vdc or 4-20mA type sensors. Built-in 5Vdc power supply for driving analog sensors and as a source for discrete sensors to signal the inputs.

Hydroponics Sensors

Hydroponics Sensors

Hydroponics systems and reservoirs can be monitored and managed by GrowControl™ systems with the help of SXH or PHX sensor units. Montior and record data in real time.

Hydroponics sensors feature precision digital electronics with fully isolated sensor probe inputs for accurate and reliable performance in harsh conditions or with multiple probe sets in the same solution. Water resistant enclosures and conformal coated circuit boards for protection form typical water room environments. Fully submersible probes or manifold mountable with manifold kits or sensor probe gland kits.

SXH

The SXH sensor transmitter is the standard for nutrient dosing applications. Featuring pH, conductivity and temperature sensors standard, and optional O.R.P. (oxidation reduction potential) for deep water culture and sanitation applications.

PHX

The PHX sensor transmitter monitors pH and temperature probes and optional O.R.P. (oxidation reduction potential) for specialized applications. PHX transmitters do not include a probe or input for conductivity.

Nutrient & pH Dosing

Nutrient & pH Dosing

Automate nutrient management and pH adjustment on reservoirs, stock tanks and recircualting hydroponic systems with AgrowDose™ chemical pumps. Take the labor and error out of managing the pH and EC of reservoirs, automate recipe changes and more. Manage up to 24 chemical parts plus two pH parts for each hydroponic sensor unit connected to a GrowControl™ GCX system.

ADi Pumps

AgrowDose™ precision chemical pumps accurately and reliably meter nutrient chemicals and pH buffers into reservoirs and recirculating systems according to recipe settings and sensor readings. Available in single pump units and banks of 2, 4, 5, and 6 individual pumps heads.

Soil Moisture Sensors

Soil Moisture Sensors

SXM sensors allow GrowControl™ GCX systems to monitor and log VWC levels and dry-down times, as well as manage irrigation based on VWC set points. SXM sensors connect into DXI8 input modules; up to eight (8) moistures sensors can connect into a single module.

SXM

Water-proof and corrosion-proof for full burial or in wet locations. Digital electronic design for high accuracy and reliability. Simply insert into media and connect to DXI8 module with included 15ft cable (can be extended up to 100ft.)

DXI8

DC input module can connect up to eight (8) SXM moisture sensors or other low-voltage sensors. Onboard 5Vdc power supply provides power to the SXM sensor.

Tank Liquid Level Control

Tank Liquid Level Control

Automating liquid level control in tanks and reservoirs is simple with Agrowtek's SXL optical liquid level sensors combined with the DX series input modules to power and connect the SXL sensors.

SXL sensors can be used to keep a tank filled between a high and low sensor, or keep a tank drained down between the two sensors. Sensors can also be used to automate a drain and fill cycle to empty and re-fill a tank based on a schedule or event.

SXL

SXL optical liquid sensors are available in five different configurations depending on logic requirements. When used with GCX controllers, the standard SXL-1 "wet" sensing model is recommended. Up to eight (8) SXL sensors can connect to one DXI8 input module.

DXI8

DC input module can connect up to eight (8) SXL liquid sensors or other low-voltage sensors. Onboard 5Vdc power supply provides power to the SXL sensor. Connect the SXL sensor output to an input on the DXI8 module.

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Agrowtek Inc.
3365 Gateway Rd
Brookfield, WI 53045
Phone: (847) 380-3009
Fax: (224) 538-2320
agrowtek@agrowtek.com

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