Portable Thermal technology in your hand!
Thermal technology or Infrared imaging can be a useful way of viewing the world and reveal things not normally seen by the naked eye. We look at how this technology is becoming even more readily available with the latest generation of smart phones and mobile devices.
We look at the new FLIR One device for smartphones.
Did you know that seven out of ten people in the UK now own a smartphone and similarly two thirds of Americans carry an iphone or android? Our phones have become an integral part of our everyday life –we use them not only for the basic communication they were designed for but for searching the internet, photographs and as apps have become more advanced, they have given us the ability to use new and innovative technology such as GPS tracking out on a run, identifying music and portable design software.
Having a portable camera with the ability to instantly upload images to social media, cloud or an app is a leading smartphone feature for many people. But imagine the possibility that your phone can not only capture normal images in daylight, but could be used in complete darkness or for a variety of creative and pioneering applications.
Well now with Thermal Infrared Imaging you can utilise the power of heat signatures to discover life in even greater detail!
Leading thermal manufacturer FLIR have introduced to the US market, the very first iPhone accessory which allows the phone to view thermal images at a remarkably low cost. The FLIR One is like a standard cover which slips over the iPhone 5c or 5s and allows the user to view thermal images on the display. The future applications for this device are phenomenal giving the everyday smart phone user this added and exciting new perspective on viewing the world around them. The FLIR One does not significantly increase the weight or size of the iPhone and can be easily held, carried and used by everyone.
As with larger thermal imaging cameras, the FLIR One displays heat patterns in different colours for example, an insulated wall might appear blue, while a person or the space above a door where energy is leaking glows orange.
For anyone interested in new technology or thermal infrared imaging this represents a really exciting leap forward.
Imagine being able to study wildlife in the pitch black of night, or ensure your campfire is totally extinguished before retiring to sleep in your tent on holiday –these can be a reality with this new way to use thermal imaging. But the applications are not restricted to using the FLIR One for fun –the iPhone in conjunction with the device could offer significant benefits in the workplace and home.
For tradesman, the FLIR could represent a further instrument for diagnosing and analysing their work along with identifying issues easily. Contractors could utilise this technology to make their business more efficient alongside protecting their work. After completing a job or project, using the FLIR One thermal imaging camera a contractor or plumber could visually demonstrate to a client that there are no leaks, isolated heat patches or show where pipes are located behind walls while saving this recording for future reference should a problem be raised.
Imagine the potential of using thermal imaging as a diagnostic tool? A builder or electrician could quickly locate areas of leakage and electrical shorts, the presence of rodents in walls or attics or locate leaks or blockages in pipes without needing to cut scout holes cutting down investigation time and cost.
And within the home the FLIR One can be indispensable –thermal imaging has a wide range of possible applications and give you some valuable insights within your home. Consider being able to reduce your energy bills by locating areas of leaking heat in the home and from windows or find out which appliances are draining energy. Not to mention, we all know how important our pets are – if Fluffy goes missing you now have the power at the touch of a button to search hidden spaces, sheds, behind closed areas with ease even in the dark allowing you to reunite your family with your four legged friend as quickly as possible.
These thermal infrared imaging cameras cannot view through walls, into houses, or through glass, since each surface radiates heat of its own but dependent upon the material, however, heat behind or near a surface may show through. There are numerous uses of this technology that are yet to even be explored!
The FLIR One offers a groundbreaking step in using thermal imaging for more and more applications, when combined with the iPhone you can now view the world in a whole new way. As yet the FLIR One is not available in the UK but keep your eye on Thermal Vision Research for more information on this and other thermal infrared imaging technological advances.