View Full Version : Playing with FLIR units

02-23-2013, 05:46 PM
Looking forward to spending some more time with these in the summer when it isn't so darn cold at night:


02-24-2013, 08:25 AM
IR is good fun, I sell and install various makes (FLIR, Axis, etc) for security surveillance/CCTV. They work in all kinds of weather, are immune to headlights and the old laser/flashlight blind the camera trick, work perfectly in daylight (which many people don't realize) and if it has an adjustable palette you can usually find a mode that gets what you want.

I'm always impressed how long footprints will stay hot after someone walks through the field of view or uses a door handle. Really cool stuff.

The only thing I hate about the current sensors is the extremely low resolution (640x480 max) and typically low frame rate unless you have a newer one.

They work best for detecting true motion and not being fooled by shadows, headlights, sunlight etc. no false alarms.

One major drawback is that they can't see through glass! Try a little test with a sheet of glass or even plexiglass, just stand behind it and you're invisible. We've done experiments using a plexiglass tall shield to walk across the field of view and it works pretty good but instead of seeing a human shaped form you see a off colour rectangle moving across the image... Pretty funny.

Of course it's also not like on TV or the movies, you are not detecting "heat signatures" like through a brick wall etc, IR is light at a different wavelength... Solid objects block light. So pointing a FLIR imager at a forest will likely just show a forest... However should a different temperature object come into the field of view, it will stick out like a sore thumb.

02-25-2013, 09:02 AM
Nice! I've seen some of the FLIR security units and they are intense!

I really like the daytime abilities of FLIR too. You can get high rez stuff in the states but I've never seen it here.

You're totally right about the glass and walls. Too many people think its "predator vision."

BUT: it does see through smoke!


02-25-2013, 01:36 PM
I've used handheld and a vehicle mounted FLIR. Lots of fun. The vehicle one was on a small turret which you controlled using a joystick. A small screen was mounted on the dash. It worked really well. I preferred this over the hand held units I currently use. Plus there's no risk of loosing a very expensive piece of equipment.