Thermal camera is a device that forms images using infrared radiation that is like a general camera that forms images using visible light. This camera is also known as the FLIR (Forward Looking InfraRed) or infrared camera. The image produced by a thermal imaging camera is known as a thermogram and analyzed through a process called thermography.
Thermal cameras are more widely used in applications such as border security, high-value site protection, industrial security, perimeter security, force protection, coastal supervision, deployable security, supervision of assets, port security, airport security, and urban supervision. The thermal camera changes the thermal energy emitted from the body into a visible image.
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How do they work? Almost all objects emit thermal energy from its surface. Modern thermal imagers use a detector called a microbolometer to sense this thermal energy. The microbolometer consists of an array of pixels, made of various most common materials, amorphous silicon and vanadium oxide. When thermal energy is released by the object striking the pixel material, the heated material changes its electrical resistance. This resistance can then be measured and translated into temperature value. The thermogram is then produced by setting colors or shades for each temperature value.
Thermal cameras are also used to detect moisture and they are very useful during heavy rain, storms, tornadoes and hurricanes. They can take hot signatures in a very damaging way. They describe normal temperatures in gray scales and high temperatures in color.
Benefits of using thermal cameras :
1) Low- light scenario
2) Immune to visual limitations
3) Camouflage foliage
4) Fewer false alarms
5) Higher return on investment