When we designed out low power signage, we started at the beginning and implemented a suite of supporting services:

  • Battery charging electronics, optimised for solar supply
  • Remote monitoring capabilities
  • A local communication architecture allowing for the monitoring of our sub-systems, and potentially third party systems and sub-systems
  • Open interfaces to allow operation with third party components

Therefore, our equipment should not be thought of as “just displays”. They are programmable computers which are permanently linked to our central servers over VPN.

They have been used to:

  • Control real time signage
  • Control audio outputs
  • Manage Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Measure traffic speeds (vehicles)
  • Measure train speeds, and determine if they are speeding up or slowing down
  • Control warning signs at level crossings
  • Detect Objects
  • Detect movement
  • Provide Power

We call this service, CERBERUS, and as well as providing a verifiable power source (including real time details about the power reservoir), it can provide complete information about remote systems in the field in real time. Whether this is verifying availability, verifying performance, or feeding back data, or indeed receiving data and as a result triggering events (including providing confirmation back via feedback loop), CERBERUS can provide full remote system monitoring and management.

Naturally we use this to monitor our own hardware, but the supply of verifiable power and the real time monitoring of sub-systems provides a flexible platform to do just about anything, anywhere. Compatible with 3G/4G and satellite links, real time communications is handled seamlessly.




HERMES LITE is the computer at the heart of all of our low powered/solar powered equipment. It is a fully programmable computer which runs diagnostic and monitoring software on a Linux OS.

HERMES Lite is therefore not just a sign controller – it is a low power computer, permanently connected to our managed infrastructure. Any systems we supply can therefore become part of an ecosystem – part of the IoT.



A simple question with a complex answer, this very much depends on local climate. We have systems operating in northern Scotland and are developing hardware for Chicago. So you can see we don’t need a California climate to support them. If we are adding additional hardware, we assess the hardware and evaluate potential, often implementing ways to reduce power demand. We assess the climate using NASA data and design the panel and battery support to match. And if we really do not think it will work, we’ll tell you! Having said that, we have system running reliably where other vendors have failed entirely. 

Our mini computer (HERMES Lite) supports a wide range of interfaces including all the usual ones (serial, network, usb, SPI). But it also features our own variant of a LIN bus which allows us to design and build interface and driver modules for other systems.

We use this extensively ourse]ves: sub boards such as the solar power/charger modules are linked to the computer in this way. The bus provides us with a way to manage other devices, to monitor them and receive data.

Hence a small additional interface card can easily be used to connect our systems to your devices if they do not already have an interface we support. And LIN is multi-drop – so there is effectively no limit on how many devices can be connected.

Our hardware works with our Display Administration Suite (DAS). Behind the scenes this software is actually a Data Administration Suite,  transferring data to and from our remote devices, and there’s a lot more going on that is usually evident.

We can accept and format data, collate it and present it, export it or just cache it. It’s up to you what you want done with it – but the backroom services already exist to support almost all normal data management functions.

Yes we can. Having low power kit enables us to consider power supplies that will not work viably for high power hardware – for example fuel cells running high power hardware will need to be refilled too frequently. Having the ability to manage comms intelligently means we can use any available carrier, including satellite. And there’s a new low power, longer range radio technology we’re looking into. But you’d need to contact us about that one!

The hardware is also designed to operate at extreme temperatures. We specify everything to operate from -20C* up to 70C. Low power means virtually no internal heating, fans or even heatsinks, all of which makes life a lot easier and more reliable.

* We state -20C because many items like ICs are simply not specified to work at lower temperatures – the manufacturers see no point in classifying them below -20C. So if you want certainty below that, we can test individual systems to around -30C.


Nexus Alpha USA supplies real-time information systems for use in public transit. Follow us on social media, or please use the contact form to get in touch.

Nexus Alpha USA
T: +1(727) 286 9909 F: +1(727) 538 4237
A: 4500 140th Avenue North, Suite 101, Clearwater, FL 33762