James was raised in Kihei, Maui since he was a child. He graduated from Kihei Charter High School and is currently pursuing an associate degree in Electronic & Computer Engineering Technology. James enjoys working on his car, playing piano, and playing video games in his free time. Once he graduates, he plans to find a job in the electronics field that can challenge him and satisfy his pursuit of knowledge.
Home Island: Maui
High School: Kihei Charter High School
Institution when accepted: UH Maui College
Akamai Project: Developing and Prototyping a Sky Monitoring System for Capturing, Displaying, and Archiving Data
Project Site: KBR, Kihei HI
Mentor: Kurt Matillano and Dylan Schwarzmeier
Monitoring the sky is an important aspect for the success of the telescope operations team at KBR. Unforeseen cloud cover can interfere with ongoing projects, sometimes causing delays in schedule and unnecessary labor costs for KBR and their partners. KBR presently has no system in place to monitor and record operational conditions at their facility in Kihei. To add this capability, a ground-up system was developed to capture images of the sky using a wide-angle camera and upload them to a website for secure viewing purposes. This website is only accessible on KBR’s internal network. The hardware utilized for this project consisted of a Raspberry Pi (small-scale computer) and a fisheye-lens camera – with an enclosure designed to be weatherproof. Python scripts were developed to access the camera, name the images with timestamps, and upload them to a date-named folder. An additional script compressed and stored the previous day’s folder on a KBR network drive. Using Nodejs, a web application was created for users to view images taken each day. Nodejs allows the server-side of the application to access Python scripts and images located in the Raspberry Pi, while maintaining a client-side website user interface. These aspects form a sky monitoring system accessible only to KBR’s telescope operations personnel. The website allows for real-time updates of the operational conditions in Kihei by capturing an image of the sky every 30 minutes, or an on-demand capture button which captures an image when pressed. Available access to archived data allows researchers to retrieve information from previous dates. This system is modular and has the potential to be scaled horizontally by placing similar systems at various locations. In the future, all data could be collected and compiled on one server allowing for ease of access.