How do I get a good image from my infrared camera?

Using a thermal imaging camera is quite simple, but interpreting the image captured takes knowledge and experience. To help a user obtain the best thermal image to analyze, there are four adjustments that can be made to the camera; focusing, changing the emissivity setting, changing the reflective temperature setting and thermal tuning.

  • Just like a standard camera, the lens of the thermal imaging camera will need to be focused to enhance the clarity of the image. Most cameras can be focused by twisting the lens where more sophisticated cameras will have a push button focus.
  • Emissivity is the amount of radiation emitted from an object compared to that of a perfect emitter of radiation when both are at the same temperature. A lower emissivity setting would be used for highly reflected objects and a high emissivity setting would be used for low reflective objects. Objects that are non-metal or that have a rougher surface will have a higher emissivity. Adjusting the emissivity is important when taking temperature measurements or when comparing two different objects temperatures. Incorrect emissivity settings will make objects appear hotter or colder then what they really are. Not all cameras will allow the user to adjust the emissivity of the camera and will be defaulted to wood or drywall.
  • The reflective temperature setting allows the user to compensate for surrounding objects temperature reflecting on an object. If reflecting thermal energy from surrounding objects is suspected, move the camera around in the area of the target and see if the hot or cold spot moves with the camera. If it does, it is a reflection from another object, if it does not, it is a true hot or cold spot. In order to find out what the reflective temperature is, the user will need to adjust the emissivity of the camera to 1.0, then place a piece of crinkled aluminum foil on a piece of cardboard. Hold the foil between the camera and the object you intend to view and note the temperature of the foil. Then input the temperature of the foil in the reflective temperature setting on the camera. Just like emissivity, reflective temperature is important when taking temperature measurements or comparing two objects temperatures. Not all cameras will allow the user to input reflective temperature.
  • Thermal tuning the camera involves adjusting the span or temperature range that the camera sees while in manual viewing mode. Thermal imaging cameras will have an automatic viewing mode and manual viewing mode. When the camera is in automatic mode, the camera will automatically adjust the temperature scale to what is being viewed which causes the display to change colors frequently when the camera is moved. Manual mode allows the user to adjust the span to a desired range and the camera will always display this temperature range. Using the manual mode is best used to bring out temperature differences of the object being viewed.

View our full line of Thermal Imaging Cameras:

https://monroeinfrared.com/infrared-cameras

 

For over 33 years Monroe Technology has been there for the professional thermographerMonroe Thermal Imagers are the most sturdy and durable in the industry and have been the main stay for many weatherization programs throughout the US. Please contact us to discuss and review all of these as necessary to ensure you make the best decision for your business!

For over 33 years Monroe Technology has been there for the professional thermographerMonroe Thermal Imagers are the most sturdy and durable in the industry and have been the main stay for many weatherization programs throughout the US. Please contact us to discuss and review all of these as necessary to ensure you make the best decision for your business!

The E-Series is a great tool for those who are in the trenches. Put the i-Series in your tool box today and use the power of infrared to visually detect problems before they detect you. Please contact us to discuss and review all of these as necessary to ensure you make the best decision for your business!

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Infrared Technology Knowledgebase