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How to choose the specifications of the thermal imager?

Author: Hou

Sep. 13, 2022

29 0 0

Tags: Measurement & Analysis Instruments

When shopping for an infrared camera, there are many specifications for a thermal imager. Looking at a single specification does not reflect the overall performance of a thermal imager, the combination of specifications is what determines the performance of a thermal imager. All the specs of a thermal lens are important, but you can focus on a few of them to make sure you're buying the right device.


The resolution of a thermal imager refers to how many pixels the detector of the thermal imager has. Higher resolution means each image contains more information, more pixels and more detail, so temperature can be measured more accurately. When choosing an infrared camera, it depends on your application. When you can get close to the target, you can choose a lower resolution device. Higher resolution is required when measuring smaller targets from a distance.


Temperature measurement range

The temperature measurement range is the entire temperature range (range) that the camera can measure. Some cameras have multiple ranges set to measure a wider temperature range more accurately. Each model of thermal imaging camera has its own specific temperature measurement range. For certain industrial applications, such as measuring high temperature equipment such as boilers, furnaces or furnaces, it is especially important to choose a thermal lens with a higher temperature range (range). Therefore, before choosing a thermal imaging camera, you must be familiar with the temperature measurement range (range) required by the industry.

field of view

The field of view (FOV) is determined by the camera lens. The field of view determines how far and how far the camera can shoot. According to different usage scenarios, choose lenses with different field of view, such as wide-angle (48°) lens or telephoto lens (12° or 7°).

Spectral range

The spectral range is the range of wavelengths detected by the sensor in the camera, measured in micrometers (μm). Most thermal imaging cameras for gas detection, such as propane, methane, and butane detectors, are mid-wave thermal imaging cameras, which means they have a spectral range between 2 microns and 5 microns. Most thermal imaging cameras are long wave cameras with a spectral range between 8 microns and 14 microns. The long-wave infrared thermal imager is suitable for various infrared applications such as power inspection, fire rescue and so on.

heat sensitivity

Thermal Sensitivity or Noise Equivalent Temperature Difference (NETD) describes the smallest temperature difference a thermal imager can see. The smaller the value, the better the thermal sensitivity of the infrared system.

If you need to measure the target temperature difference is large, you do not need a thermal camera that is too thermally sensitive. But for applications that require more accurate temperature measurement, such as detecting moisture problems, higher thermal sensitivity is required.

When you are not sure which thermal imager to choose, you can refer to the above parameters. When choosing equipment, you can not only consider one parameter, but comprehensively choose according to your own needs.

For example, if you need to detect some subtle problems, if you don't have a high thermal sensitivity, then even high resolution can't be used.