This is a great area to collaborate… I’m personally working on something …. and built some devices in the past see
So as ever partly depends on budget.
I only know about Android based “GSM Field Test Pro” – for techy stuff the iPhone is a more closed environment – not open source.
The 3G(4G+) devices modems are evolving, the cellular network is cellphone driven – and the big industry players are a bit sticky about the lower revenue data M2M (machine2machine).. however the IoT (Internet of Things) is driving new products.
I’d be interest in what you are doing as I’m working on powering in remote instruments … so particularly interfaces and what instruments you are hoping to interface to would be interesting.
Physical sensors are a major budgetary challenge – scientists can sense elements on Pluto – but not many places have a Nasa budget to do it 🙂
The specific challenges in sensors are accuracy, long term stability, calibration and powering. Each physical sensor has its own unique challenges to turn the real world sensing into traceable units.:(
The Nutrient sensor challenge is one example of trying to solve the problem with I hear 28teams trying to create a Nitrate or Phosphate sensor