DAQLab is a new all-in-one data acquisition
- control - SCADA - HMI - data analysis software
DAQLab actually consists of two programs: DAQLab
Acquire, which takes the data, stores it to disk, broadcasts
it on a network, and automates your system, and DAQLab
Control, which provides the complete user interface for
setting your system parameters and creating your own
A single Control program can communicate with multiple copies
of Acquire and multiple Control programs can communicate with
a single Acquire. Acquire and Control can be run on the same
computer, or on computers around the world. Because of this
separation, acquisition rates can be guaranteed.
Input and output channels are easy to configure. Acquisition rates
are set on a channel by channel basis, so you do not need to log
all channels at the same rate. The channel setup page displays a
graph or table of the data and allows you to set outputs without
creating any screens; this is useful for quickly testing your hardware.
The channel view also has room for any notes you may want to keep
about a channel.
With DAQLab you can create an unlimited number of screens, and
can even overlay them to keep important information on top. Data
can be displayed as a text component or an animated image
component that can be set up to perform specific actions when
clicked. In addition to displaying data, text components can also
be used for displaying things like Low / Medium / High, or just simple
DAQLab provides some powerful imaging capabilities and comes
with a 3800 industrial image library. You can create schematics of
your process, add buttons, switches, bar-charts, etc.. You can
change images depending on your system's state and even
You can also place graphs on any of your screens. These graphs
can display Y vs Time trends, or X vs Y comparisons. You can
create as many traces as you may need on up to 12 different
Y axes. Traces use expressions, so there's no need to pre-calculate
the values you would like to graph. For example, if you want to
plot Sin(PumpRotation^2)/PumpSpeed vs. Log(TankPressure)
you simply enter these two expressions in the trace setup.
Graphs offer many features for displaying your data including error
bars, axis, line and bound annotations. Graph markers can be
used to identify points and quickly analyse peaks in your data.
DAQLab creates the graphs in a background process, so even
the most complicated graphs won't make DAQLab sluggish.
Your process or experiment can be automated through the use
of sequences. Sequences can be as simple as setting some
initial outputs to full-blown soft-PLC system. Sequences have
some of the attributes of a programming language, but are much
easier to use. You can have as many Sequences as you deem
necessary. Multiple Sequences can be run concurrently, either
triggered manually, or started by another Sequence. This makes
it very easy to separate out different tasks.
Unlike most automation software, DAQLab's Sequences are
completely time driven. This means that every Sequence
command has a time associated with it that determines when
the command will execute. Of course time is all relative and
you can branch to different locations or times in a sequence,
even to times that don't have a command associated with it.
DAQLab provides a significant amount of data processing and
analysis tools to complete your data acquisition tasks and convert
your data into something useful. Since DAQLab integrates the
data analysis with the data acquisition and data display, you can
perform your data analysis on your data as you are taking it. You
can also directly load your data from previous experiments run
with DAQLab and analyse it using the same tools you would on
your live data. You can even do this while DAQLab is busy taking
DAQLab allows all the standard mathematical processing you
may need, including curve fitting, interpolation, statistical functions,
smoothing, FFT, correlation, convolution, histograms, and
percentile graphs. In addition to this, DAQLab offers a few
unusual functions that you'll find really helpful for dealing with time.
These include an Align function to align data points taken on
different time scales, a ShiftTime function for adjusting data with
different retension times, and an InsertTime function for quickly
generating constant functions vs. time.
With the exception of curve fitting and percentile graphs, all the
functions in DAQLab can be used on your live data in real time.
This means you get your results immediately!
Because there is never a lab notebook around when you need
one, DAQLab provides a notebook for you. By using the Quick
Note feature, you can enter a time stamped note that is
automatically stored to disk.
If you need to get data from another program, you can import
data from a delimited text file: If you need to get your data into
some other program you can either process the data directly
from storage, or export it from DAQLab Control in a delimited
DAQLab has drivers for many well know hardware manufactures
such as National Instruments, ComputerBoards, IOTech,
ACCES IO in addition to Audon's LabJack USB unit and the
Smart A/D range. More are being added all the time. There is
also a generic serial device driver and DAQLab supports OPC
so it can communicate with a whole host of industrial equipment
such as PLC's, remote terminal units and process controllers.
Pricing is very competitive with four DAQLab versions for every
budget. The feature-limited "Lite" version is only £49 while the
full version is only £459.