ASTM protocol: reading data from laboratory equipment. Tutorial.
We need to collect data from laboratory equipment that supports the ASTM data interchange protocol and write them to a database. What do we need to do?
Terms of reference:
To solve this problem, we are going to use:
The ASTM (E1381 or E1394) protocol is widely used in laboratory equipment and allows you to automatically collect measurement data and other relevant data (date, first name and last name, the highest and the lowest values, measurement number, etc.).
Such equipment usually supports multiple data interchange protocols. You may need to configure your equipment to use the ASTM protocol.
The following popular laboratory facilities are supported, among others:
Every year more vendors are added to the supported equipment list, and the ASTM standard is becoming even more widespread. It means that our program can work with other equipment, too. The list above is given just as an example.
Step 1: Configure the equipment connection
Typically, the serial port is used for connecting to the equipment. So you need to create a new configuration and configure the COM port settings (figure 1). The COM port can be either real or virtual. For example, you can obtain data via an RS232-to-USB adapter. The connection parameters depend on equipment settings.
Step 2: Select a parser
You need to select the ASTM module as a parser (figure 2). You may download the ASTM parser here if it does not exist in the list. You don't need to configure any additional settings for the parser.
Step 3: Select and configure the data export module
For example, here you can see how you can export data to an MS SQL database running on the same computer.
Before you can do that, you need to use SQL Server Management Studio to create a table in the database. Possibly, you will also want to create a separate database. You can download a sample SQL script for creating a database table from here.
Then you need to enable the SQL Database Pro data export module (figure 3) and configure the database connection (figure 4).
After that, add an SQL query for writing data to the queue and bind parser variables to the SQL query parameters (figure 5). You can download a sample SQL script for inserting data from here, or you can load a preconfigured queue from the file.
Then save all the changes (click "OK" in each settings window, which will also close the window).
You may download the backup copy of this configuration here and restore from the "File" menu in the main window.