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Frequently Asked Questions

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General

Applicable to most AML products

Download and install latest version of SeaCast 4 and use the AutoScan feature.

Try a different USB to serial adapter, or a true serial port.

Download and install latest version of SeaCast 4.

Correct maintenance prolongs the life of connectors. To facilitate
proper care, a small tube of Molykote 44 Medium is provided with
each new X•Series instrument.

  • Apply a layer of Molykote 44 grease to the female half of the
    connection. Use just enough to cover all of the holes.
  • Press the shorting plug or cable down into the connector and wipe away any excess grease. The connector is now lubricated.
  • Perform this maintenance every week that the instrument is in use.
  • After a connector is cleaned, reapply grease before use.

You can also refer to this video on how to apply.

Enter the following commands in SeaCast:

  • SET STARTUP NOHEADER (disables the power up header information)
  • SET STARTUP MONITOR (enables data output on power up)
  • SET SAMPLE RATE 2/S (sets the desired sampling rate)
  • SET DETECT 06  (sets fixed 19200 baud rate)

The user manuals for your instrument, sensors, and SeaCast software are on the USB sent with your purchase, but they can also be found in the Documents section of this website.

All AML instruments can be powered by 12VDC. The applicable voltage ranges vary, but ALL instruments will work from 12VDC. You will find the voltage range for each instrument model in its user manual.

The SET DEFAULT command was likely sent. To resolve this, you will need to send the following commands:

  • SET SN XXXXX, where XXXXX is the SN of your instrument.
    • This number is found on the sticker. On loggers, the serial number is also engraved on the shackle. On real-time instrumentation, the serial number is engraved in the acetal housing at the top near the communication connector.
  • SET INSTRUMENT PDC-XXX, where XXX is the model of your instrument.
    • The model codes are as follows:
      • BSX for Base•X and Base•X₂
      • BMTX for bathyMetrec•X
      • MIX for Micro•X
      • MNX for Minos•X
      • MTX for Metrec•X
      • MVPX for MVP•X
      • PLX for Plus•X
      • SMX for Smart•X

The rule of thumb is the bend radius of a cable is 15 times the diameter of the cable. For example, a 0.25" diameter cable has a bend radius of 3.75."

Xchange™ Sensors

AML's field-swappable sensor heads

We typically recommend annual calibration, however there is no set rule of thumb. There are many factors at play including usage, care and handling, the deployment environment, and contract requirements to name a few. 

A benefit of Xchange sensors is that only the sensor heads need to return to factory for calibration. If you have spare sensors, they can be installed on the instrumentation instead to eliminate downtime.

Re-grease the 2-015 O-rings.

Ensure firmware on the InterX board is 1.10 or higher. If it is not, return instrument to factory for upgrade.

The O-rings on P•Xchange™, T•Xchange™, Tu•Xchange™, and UV•Xchange™ are 2-015.

Loggers

Internally powered instrumentation

Send the INIT command, to format the memory card.

Confirm that the SV•Xchange, CT•Xchange, or C•Xchange sensors installed are giving valid readings by monitoring data in real-time. The instrument uses these sensors as the water switch to know when to start logging. If these sensors are outputting zeros when in water, the instrument believes it is in air and will not log data.

  • Charge the battery for at least 1 hour.
  • Try running the instrument off of external power.
    • If the LED comes on, the internal battery needs to be replaced.
    • If the LED is still off, return the instrument for repair. Request an RMA.

Ensure you are using the AE6000 USB Wifi Adapter.

Refer to quick start guides:
Quick Start Guide - Data•Xchange
Quick Start Guide - Base•X2 


Also refer to the troubleshooting section of the SeaCast 4 User Manual.

This is an error code that is displayed when the instrument cannot calculate a salinity value, usually due to the conductivity reading being zero. This can also be caused when the temperature or pressure readings have a large error, like the temperature is 85 C or the pressure is -25 dBar, for example.

Real-time Probes

Externally powered instrumentation

The instrument needs to be set to "data on powerup." Refer to page 8 of the Micro•X manual.

The pH sensor will not be detected the same way as a true Xchange sensor; this is why it has a black collar. The information displayed for all the analog channels is stored on the logger board, so the same information is displayed whether or not the analog sensor is plugged in. 

The pH sensor must be plugged into the specific port that is configured for it. This specific port is illustrated on the Configuration Document for your instrument, which can be found on the USB included with the purchase. If you no longer have access to the Configuration Document please contact the factory and provide your instrument's serial number. 

  • Confirm you are using the latest version of SeaCast.
  • Enter the following commands to get the data lined up with the correct column header:
    • @DISABLETIMESTAMP=FALSE
    • SET SCAN NOTIME
  • To reverse this change in settings, enter the following commands:
    • @DISABLETIMESTAMP=TRUE
    • SET SCAN TIME

Moving Vessel Profilers

and other deployment systems

Real time profiling while the survey vessel is in motion provides a host of advantages over periodic, stationary profiling. A summary of the main benefits can be found here.

Check that the 120 VAC power cable is connected to a 120 VAC 20A fused source
(or 220VAC if applicable).

The settings are incorrect.

  • Check maximum depth setting is less than survey area depth.
  • Check depth overshoot setting.
  • Check depth off bottom setting is greater than 0.
  • Check that vessel’s sounder is connected and information is accurate.
  • Check Winch Brake cylinder to verify brake arm rotation

On hydraulic-equipped systems, check the Winch Enable solenoid and valve:

    • Verify solenoid and/or valve is not faulty.

The messenger is not detected at the Outer Sheave Limit Switch.

  • Check wiring to Outer Sheave limit switch.
  • Check limit switch adjustment procedure as outlined in section VI of the troubleshooting manual.

The Emergency Stop circuit has been tripped.

  • Check all Emergency Stop buttons and pull out any buttons that are pressed in.
  • Check Inner Sheave limit switch and reset if necessary by pressing the Inner Sheave reset button when the HAND/OFF/AUTO switch is OFF.
  • MVP300 ONLY: Chain Break detectors are mis-adjusted. Remove chain guard and adjust so there is a closed circuit through both limit switches. 
  • Ensure Controller Interface Cable is plugged in at Controller Interface Box end. 

 

Communications path between Embedded Controller in Main Control Box and Controller Interface Box is broken.

  • Check Hand/Off/Auto switch. Switch must be in Hand or Auto position for the Embedded Controller to communicate.
  • Check for DC power within the Main Control Box.
  • Check for Data Transmission at the embedded controller board. LED D20, near the J12 connector should flash approximately five times/sec.
  • Check that jumper is in the 1-2 position.
  • Check that all cables are plugged into the Controller Interface Box.
  • Check for correct settings in the System Configuration Window

The vessel's depth sounder has timed out.

  • Increase the Sounder Timeout delay in the System Configuration Window.
  • Adjust the vessel’s echo sounder for more reliable depth estimates.
  • If in deep water, consider disabling the Bottom Avoidance feature in the Main Operator Window.

This can be caused by one of two issues:

There is no power to the tow body.

  • Check connections through cable to fish, DTM, and sensor.
  • Check that DC supplies are ON in the Main Control Box and Controller Interface Box.

Data connection is broken.

  • Check that the Controller Interface Box is correctly connected to the MVP Controller.
  • Check for correct settings in System Configuration Window (Instrument type and Comm Port selections).
  • Check that the LEDs on the front panel of the Controller Interface Box are flashing.
MVP30 / MVP30-350: The Manual Override switch on the side on the MVP Control Box (located on the winch) allows the end user to bypass all computer control and use the MVP Pendant for tow body recovery. Reference the MVP Operators Guide for complete instructions.
 
MVP200 / MVP300: Use the Emergency Manual Override to power the electric motor and operate the hydraulics manually. Reference the MVP Operators Guide for complete instructions.

Since Microsoft no longer manufactures or supports Windows XP, it is not an option. Windows 7 is recommended.  Depending on the version of MVP software being used, Windows 10 is also compatible.

Service & Logistics

Sending equipment to the factory

  • Contact customer service at AML Oceanographic for an RMA (Return Materials Authorization) number via service@AMLoceanographic.com or +1-250-656-0771.
  • Prepare a standard commercial invoice for shipping to Canada with the following information clearly stated:
    • full and complete product description
    • Instrument and/or Sensor Serial Number/s and HS Code 9015.80.80
    • value for customs purposes only
    • goods manufactured in Canada, returning for evaluation
  • Email a copy of the commercial invoice and shipment waybill to AML Oceanographic.
  • If shipping the instrument via airline or airfreight, please ensure that the airport of destination is Victoria (YYJ) NOT Vancouver. Unless prior authorization is obtained, invoices received by AML for costs associated with inbound shipments will be recovered.
  • We suggest that you use the following as your shipping label:

Ship to:

AML Oceanographic

2071-A Malaview Avenue

Sidney, BC V8L 5X6

Canada

Attn.: Shipping & Receiving

Tel.: +1-250-656-0771

RMA#: ______

  • Contact customer service at AML Oceanographic for an RMA (Return Materials Authorization) number via service@AMLoceanographic.com or +1-250-656-0771.
  • Prepare a standard commercial invoice for shipping to Canada with the following information clearly stated:
    • full and complete product description
    • Instrument and/or Sensor Serial Number/s and HS Code 9015.80.80
    • value for customs purposes only
    • goods manufactured in Canada, returning for evaluation
  • Email a copy of the commercial invoice and shipment waybill to AML Oceanographic.
  • If shipping the instrument via airline or airfreight, please ensure that the airport of destination is Halifax (YHZ). Unless prior authorization is obtained, invoices received by AML for costs associated with inbound shipments will be recovered.
  • We suggest that you use the following as your shipping label:

Ship to:

AML Oceanographic

800A Windmill Road, Unit 6C

Dartmouth, NS B3B 1L1

Canada

Attn.: Shipping & Receiving

Tel.: +1-250-656-0771

RMA#: ______

Here is your answer.

AML Locations
Pacific

2071 Malaview Avenue
Sidney, BC V8L 5X6
CANADA
Tel: +1 250-656-0771
Fax: +1 250-655-3655
Hours: 8:00-17:00 PST

Atlantic

800A Windmill Road, Unit 6C
Dartmouth, NS B3B 1L1
CANADA
Tel: +1-250-656-0771
Hours: 8:00-17:00 AST

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