Cooled IR detectors for remote sensing and
Recent advancements in cooled IR detector
technology have led to the rapid development of many
IR remote sensing instruments for a wide variety
of environmental applications, including hyperspectral
remote sensing, space imaging and surveillance. Because
of the extraordinarily high sensitivity of cryogenically
cooled detectors, IR systems have been developed
for imaging in a variety of spectral bands with wavelengths
up to 25µm.
© Laurin Publishing.
from the December 2010 issue of Photonics Spectra
LWIR or MWIR infrared imaging: Which is best
Many commercial imaging applications require the use of infrared
cameras having cooled detectors because of their far superior sensitivity,
spectral behavior, response time and frame rate. Proper selection
of the optimal infrared band can be tricky. These detectors can
be optimized to operate in different spectral bands as a result of the
dewar window and cold filter transmission characteristics or the active
temperature of the FPA.
High speed infrared cameras enable demanding thermal
Recent developments in cooled mercury cadmium
telluride (MCT or HgCdTe) infrared detector technology
have made possible the development of high performance
infrared cameras for use in a wide variety of demanding
thermal imaging applications. These infrared cameras
are now available with spectral sensitivity in a wide
range of bands. Camera features now include high frame
rate imaging, adjustable exposure time and event triggering
enabling the capture of temporal thermal events. These
performance capabilities and camera features enable a
wide range of thermal imaging applications that were
previously not possible.
High-speed IR camera captures images
without blur: Results show benefits of LWIR spectral
Infrared (IR) cameras can image fast-moving
objects and measure the temperature of any point on an
object without the errors associated with motion blur.
One application is in the study of the thermal characteristics
of tires in motion. Using a high-speed IR camera to observe
tires running on a dynamometer at speeds in excess of
150 mph, researchers can capture detailed temperature
data during dynamic testing to simulate turning and braking
High-performance MCT sensors for
Recent MCT Technology Enhancements Yield
Improved Long-wave Infrared Imaging Performance for R&D
Applications. There are a growing number of infrared
photovoltaic 2D focal plane array (FPA) detectors commercially
available for integration into high performance infrared
cameras. Proper selection of sensor technology depends
on the application and systems requirements.
Measuring cold object temperatures
using infrared cameras
For cold targets a LWIR or VLWIR camera
is superior to MWIR. Data and calculations in support
of this position are given in this paper.
Thermal Imaging: 12 steps toward better
If you’re having unscheduled electrical outages
for any reason, the chances are good that you need to look
at how to improve your infrared inspection program. Thermal
imaging is much less about what kind of infrared camera you
use than it is about using the infrared camera you have well.
Here are twelve steps, some simple and others
less so, that will help improve the results you are getting
from this remarkable technology.
Understanding infrared camera thermal
You’ve no doubt purchased a digital camera
sometime over the past few years to replace your old film
camera. Often thermal camera brochures offer list specification
that you, as a user, may never be able to confirm or even
understand. This paper’s objective is to help you simplify
your understanding of how image quality is determined.
Covered are three topics that directly influence
thermal image quality: pixel resolution, thermal sensitivity,
and non-uniformity correction. A number of related topics
are discussed as well.
Uncooled Infrared Imaging: Higher performance,
detectors have realized
and lower costs.
This has fueled the
availability of a wide
variety of infrared cameras
based on those
detectors. Low cost
portable and fixed infrared
cameras as well
as high performance
systems have been introduced for a variety of thermal imaging applications.
As a result of the new price points and better overall performance,
traditional markets for infrared cameras have exploded
while new markets have been created that benefit from the steady
improvements in performance.
This article reviews how uncooled detectors have matured into the
mainstream markets for infrared imaging. Significant performance
improvements are described such as sensitivity, resolution, thermal
time constant and uniformity as well as the benefits to system complexity
and cost. Infrared camera cores are now available that deliver
the performance and versatility required from OEMs to meet specific
requirements. Primary applications for thermal imaging cameras are
Secrets to a successful
thermal imaging-based building energy audit
Today, thermal imaging has become an important
inspection tool for identifying heat loss, energy leaks and
underlying factors that are critical to the energy usage
in a commercial building or home.
This white paper reviews fundamentals of an
energy audit, the different types of infrared cameras that
can be used in energy audits, the use of a blower door to
improve infrared inspections, thermal behavior of windows
Testing building envelope systems using
infrared thermal imaging
The structures we live and work in are susceptible
to quality and performance problems during construction and
maintenance that can impact performance and may, in some
cases, render them dangerous. Regardless of the building
type involved, infrared thermography can provide remarkable,
nondestructive information about construction details and
This paper discusses the numerous applications
for thermal imaging technology currently being used to inspect
building envelopes. These include validation of structural
details, verification of energy performance (conduction and
air leakage), location of moisture intrusion, and the identification
of structural and system degradation of roofs and facades.
Examples will be given for each application and the basic
conditions required will be discussed.
Locating levels in tanks
and silos using infrared
Infrared thermal imaging is a powerful tool
for locating and verifying levels in tanks and silos. Other
level indication instruments are often not sufficiently reliable
in many situations, or positive verification of the instrumentation
readings is required. When properly used, thermal imaging
can reveal not only the liquid/gas interface, but also sludge
buildup and floating materials such as waxes and foams. Similar
techniques can be used to locate levels and bridging problems
in silos containing fluidized solids.
This paper discusses the parameters and limitations
that must be addressed, shows techniques that can be employed,
and illustrates the discussions with numerous thermal images.
Guidelines for performing infrared inspections
of motor control centers
Whether it's your first infrared inspection
or you're a veteran with hundreds of surveys under your belt,
it is important to realize that in order to successfully
identify and analyze thermal anomalies, it is beneficial
to understand the operation of the equipment under inspection.
Download this white paper to learn about the
recommended guidelines for inspecting the motor control center
(MCC). The paper describes how to identify key components
and potential problem areas and illustrates both common and
not-so-common thermal anomalies.