Thermal imagers are instruments that create pictures of heat rather than light.

 

They measure radiated IR energy and convert the data to corresponding maps of temperatures.

 

The basis for IR imaging technology is that any object whose temperature is above 0 °K radiates infrared energy. The amount of radiated energy is a function of the object's temperature and its relative efficiency of thermal radiation, known as emissivity.

 

 

 

Here are some interesting things the Infrared Camera picks up that the eye can't:

Water running from a hot and cold tap. The thermal image can even detect the two sources mixing in the sink basin...
Heat emitted from an LCD monitor
Ross' hands after being run under the hot and cold taps for just 30 seconds...
The surface of a desk 30 seconds after Amanda took her hand off of it. The thermal image shows the heat signature that remained on the desk surface...
A cup of hot water fresh from the kettle...

 

Using software designed to analyze these thermal images, we can

Thermal imaging has been used in the medical field for diagnoses ranging from minor injuries to cancer detection. This thermal image shows Ross' injured finger...
We can select the area with his hand and the software will give a graphical representation of the heat distribution. Most of his hand is about 22 degrees (Celcius), but the injured finger is way up at 27 degrees.
The thermal imager picks up residual effects of cold water on an empty cup...
The graph shows that the parts of the cup will remaining water droplets are about 6 degrees cooler than the remaining plastic.
Glass blocks the thermal information coming from outside the window. But, we can see how warm it is outside through the opening...
Selecting the area of interest gives us a temperature distribution for inside as well as outside the lab.

 

Click Here to See More Infrared Images of animals at "The World of Warmth" Site