Monthly Archives: December 2014

Merry Christmas from the Linknode Team


Well 2014 has been another fantastic and busy year for the team at Linknode. We’d like to thank our customers, suppliers and friends for all your support, and look forward to working with you in the New Year.

Merry Christmas one and all.

(from left to right) Minh, Stewart, Rufus, Abi, George, Crispin and Santa Calum


Instagram Style Effects on Photos in VentusAR

As part of our testing process leading up to a release, we always take all the devices out on-site and check that everything lines up correctly. This time, this included the new iPad Air 2 that we are going to start supporting from version 2.1 onwards. I was out yesterday at Craigengelt hill in Stirlingshire. back in the office today, I noticed a slightly weird effect on all the photos I had taken:

Misty Photo of Craigengelt Hill

Misty Photo of Craigengelt Hill

The vignetting effect was added automatically without me doing anything. Further investigation in the office, suggests that it is being caused by the Wallee case slightly obscuring the lens on the iPad Air 2.


IPad Air case, doesn’t quite fit the iPad Air 2

In fairness, we are using the Wallee case for the iPad Air on an iPad Air 2 – seeing as the device is thinner and a different shape, I’m not surprised the case doesn’t fit perfectly.

Its a nice effect, but not one to keep using – we just need our supplier to get some shipped to us – from Australia !!!

Feature Spotlight: Custom Terrain Services

DTMAs part of a license for VentusAR, users have access to our national coverage terrain services. The Ordnance Survey provides the DTM data for terrain services in the UK under the Open Data license. Currently these include OS Terrain 50 and Panorama.

However, when assessing a wind project, you may want to use a more detailed DTM to provide a better surface model. VentusAR customers have always been able to utilise a pre-loaded custom terrain data.  With VentusAR v2.1 we have added self-service functionality to the portal to allow user to import and manage their own a custom terrain services. As part of this additions, we have revised the pricing model for hosting custom terrain services.

This post explains the process of importing a custom terrain service in the VentusAR portal and the new billing model.

Creating a Terrain Service

The custom terrain service importing works as follows:

  • Use the portal to create and import custom terrain data
  • The following information will need to be provided:
  • Table name – a unique name for this terrain service. We suggest using a combination of company name, project name and DTM name (e.g. LN_TestProject_Terrain5). Validation will warn you if the table name is not valid
  • Data file – We support ‘asc’ or ‘xyz’ files. These can be compressed into a zip archive to reduce transfer time to the portal
  • Grid size – the distance between each point in the DTM. (e.g. Terrain 50 has data points ever 50m, so has a grid size of 50).
  • MinX, MinY, MaxX, MaxY – the minimum X and Y values covered by this DTM
  • X Offset, Y Offset – any offset from 0 this DTM uses. If the data is 0 aligned leave as 0, if the data is specified at mid-tile positions add the offset (e.g. Terrain 50 uses 25m offsets)
  • Coordinate system – the coordinate system the DTM should be loaded in (default is OSGB)
  • Creating and importing the terrain service can take up to an hour depending on load through the VentusAR portal at the time


  • The size of the custom DTM is measured in data points. Users can import a total of 1,000,000 datapoints arranged in a 1000×1000 point square. For a 50m DTM this allows you to import an area of 50km by 50km

Using a Terrain Service

To use a custom terrain service in a project:

  • Expand the Custom Terrain Services section on the Edit Project page
  • Select the custom terrain service to use

Please note that a custom terrain service can only be used on one project. Once it has been used, it will no longer be available to be added to any other project.


Billing for custom terrain data will be done on the first of the month for the previous month, i.e. billing in arrears. You will be charged a flat fee for each calendar month (or part of) that you have custom terrain data hosted in the VentusAR portal. A billing report can be found from the Terrain Services section of the portal. This shows the months that the terrain service has been active on the portal and the price.


Terrain services can be cancelled at any time (though they are billed by calendar month). They can be cancelled from the list of terrain services in the portal.

VentusAR 2.1 Released – Assessing Cumulative Impact

We are pleased to announce the release of VentusAR v2.1 for Android, iPad (and associated portal updates).

This is a significant upgrade, allowing cumulative data to be purchased and used from our National Cumulative Dataset.  This dataset contains information sourced from local authorities about the status of wind turbine planning applications.

We recommend updating the new version of VentusAR to take advantage of the new features that have been introduced.

The features you have been waiting for:

For iPad and Android users this release includes many new features including:

  • National Cumulative Dataset: All projects get free summary visuals from the national cumulative dataset. If you purchase snapshot data for a project area, then accurate, up-to-data cumulative information and turbine details will be shown instead
  • Turbine Information Screens: The site and turbine information screens have been updated to make them easier to use
  • International Support: Per-project projection codes now allow local coordinates to be used in different countries

VentusAR 2.1, showing cumulative projects 

For the portal, the new features added include:

  • National Cumulative Dataset: the portal now allows access to the national cumulative dataset. This allows you to obtain accurate, up-to-date cumulative turbine and project information
  • Custom Terrain Importing: custom terrain models can now be imported from within the portal
  • Export to PDF Enhancements: improved metadata display layout and set a custom logo
  • International Support: projects can be set up in Finland and Ireland

Please see our the release notes on VentusAR 2.1 for AndroidiPad or the portal.

You can read more about how you can access cumulative data on our website and view videos here.

We will be explaining more about these new features in future ‘Feature Spotlight’ blogs. Stay tuned for more info.  In the meantime, if you have any queries, please feel free to contact us on 0141 559 6170 or email

We are very proud and excited to be the first in the UK to launch a service of this type, which is the product of more than twelve months concentrated research and development work between ourselves and our data partners.

As always, we like to celebrate with a cake or two. This release deserved something a little more special though. Yum.