Special Uses and Applications of Thermal Infrared Imaging
Thermography, the sensing of heat has been practiced in medicine for centuries.
An animal body and its organs generate predictable temperature readings, if abnormalities are present the heat generated by abnormal tissue will generally increase. With increased sensitivity measuring equipment (variations as low as 1/10 c can be detected) it is possible to identify cancers, infected body tissue, injuries to muscles and joints, embryos, etc. located well below the surface of the skin.
Non destructive evaluation of material by comparison of the thermal image to known standards or historical thermal images.
“Military and Security”
Night vision was the initial application of the Infrared technology. Night vision is a major application of the technology with use by military, law enforcement, fire fighters and security.
Current uses include missile and artillery guidance, detections and destruction. Counting people, identifying unusual objects being transported, drawing attention to people who have elevated temperature are additional security applications.
Infrared devices are used to monitoring activity such as counting people entering or leaving a premises, determining the temperature of subjects to determine possible illness, identifying the presence of unusual items being carried etc. the remote switch devices to turn on or off and send data to other electronic apparatus, motion detectors, measuring instruments, etc.
Search and Rescue, looking for lost people and animals by land or air
Fire fighters, seeking out hot spots at fire scenes
Fire fighters, using night vision in smoke filled environments
Police searching accident scenes for items ejected from vehicles including people
Measurement of storage facilities
Thermography can be used to give approximate measurements of storage containers as the temperature of the contents will radiate a different temperature through the wall of the container than the ambient air above the product in the container.
Emissivity of the material must be considered. (see Factors affecting Thermal Infrared Images)