DroughtSpotter and FieldScale are controlled by a custom built software package. The software is running on the embedded computer in the control box. The software commands the valves in the units and reads weight information from the scales. To use the software a web interface is available where experiment definition files may be uploaded which are to be executed by the platform. Experiment definition files may be created by any program that can import and export spreadsheets in .CSV format (Comma Separated Values) or directly in the software using the wizard. To successfully use the web interface it is necessary to use a compatible web-browser (Google Chrome, Chromium or Safari are supported).

Connecting to the device

To be able to connect to your device you require a network connection to the control box. This connection can either be a ethernet connection through your LAN or you connect directly to the WiFi of the system. To connect via Ethernet simply type the IP address of the device in your browser and complete it with /ds (e.g. If you don't know the IP address of the device in your LAN contact your system administrator or our support team for help.

To connect via WiFi activate WiFi on your device. Find the “phenospex-wlan-CUSTOMERNAME” in the list of detected WiFi networks. Connect to it and enter the password which is 125125125. To connect to the DroughtSpotter web interface open a compatible browser. In the address bar of the browser the following address should be entered:

After connection to the web interface a user login will be required. Type in the credentials provided during the installation and click Login. 

Tab Overview

The web interface is divided in several tabs providing distinct functionality. The tabs and their functions are:

  • User - the current user login
  • Status - The Status tab provides an overview of the current state of the system.
  • Last irrigation -  Provides information on the amount of water refilled during the last irrigation
  • Weight -  Provides information on the current weight of the load cells
  • Target - Provides information on the target weight or deviation and the mode to reach or hold the target weight.
  • Delta - Displays the difference between current weight and the target weight
  • Experiments - Displays the currently running experiments and serves as input for new experiments
  • Export - Produces data reports of current and past experiments
  • System - Various system specific settings are displayed here. It is not advised to change any setting here without consulting Phenospex support first.  
Each tab will be explained in the following sections.


The status tab graphically displays on a spatial map the cells, just as they are arranged on the real units. Each cell can have one of three different states.

  • OK (Green) - The cell is used in an experiment and the target weight was reached during the last scheduled irrigation round within error margin
  • Error (Red) - The cell is used in an experiment but the target weight was not reached during the last irrigation round.
  • Unused (Black) - The cell is currently not used in any experiment

To have a graphical overview of the weight development of a specific cell over time click on the cell in the spatial map. A graph will be shown with the weight on the Y-axis and the date on the X-axis. To zoom in on a particular time range press the left mouse button in the graph and drag it left or right. As soon as the left mouse button is released the selected time-frame will be shown. Resetting the zoom level can be done by clicking anywhere on the graph once. 

Last irrigation  

The “Last irrigation” tab graphically shows the weight in grams of water that was filled up per cell. The color of the cell indicates the relative amount of water that was refilled. The color bandwidth ranges from white (none to low) to dark blue (high). Clicking on a cell shows the same graph as displayed in the status tab with the same functionality.


The “Weight” tab shows the most recent weight reading of all the cells. Measurement units are in grams. To tare (set current value to zero by offsetting) all the cells, e.g. to compensate for drift or other random factors press the button “Set zero (all)”. During use of the set zero function make sure no objects are placed on any of the load cells. Otherwise the zero point will be wrong in future experiments.


The target tab shows information regarding the set weight per load cell as derived from the experiment definition file. The weight is shown in grams. Furthermore the mode of keeping the target weight is signified by the character between the parenthesis. These characters can be:

  • “f” (Fixed) Always irrigate a set amount of water in grams, regardless of weight at specified times.
  • “d” (Deviation) Ensure the target weight is held constant within the deviation given in percents by the experiment file.
  • “h” (Hold) Always try to reach the target weight during every irrigation round
  • "c" (Copy) Copy the target weight from another cell
  • “n” (No irrigation) No irrigation will be performed and only weights will be recorded.
  • “?” (Undefined) The experiment to which these weighing units have been assigned hasn't started yet.

For more information on the irrigation modes you can see the Irrigation Modes Section


The “Delta” tab shows the difference in grams between the “Target” tab weight and the “Weight” tabs weight.


The experiments tab shows the current running experiments and also allows to create new experiments. By clicking on a currently running experiment you will receive more information about the experiment. Current experiments can be paused and resumed using the “Pause experiment” button and “Resume experiment” button. Closing an experiment ends the current experiment and removes it from the current loaded experiments. 

By clicking on the Add/Update Experiment from file you can create or update an experiment based on a CSV spreadsheet. For more information see How to setup and Experiment using the CSV sheet