Thermal Imaging Surveillance Cameras
An introduction to thermal imaging - Technology and applications
Utilising the latest technological advances Silent Sentinel brings affordable thermal imaging technology to commercial surveillance and security applications. All models are designed to operate without ambient light or illumination and will provide excellent image quality in challenging environments. All can be used as a stand-alone security device or to enhance the capability of any video surveillance system. As thermal cameras detect heat and provides high contrast images they offer the best detection device to work with video analytics.
Thermal Imaging cameras measure heat and converts it into a visible image which makes it ideal for zero light surveillance, and will operate in all weather conditions, even fog.
Thermal Imaging cameras provide a high contrast image which is perfect for Video Analytics and motion detection. Radiometric models will give an alarm output, when a parameter is breached.
Silent Sentinel has a very extensive range of thermal imaging cameras for all applications.
When combined with a video camera as in the Oculus, the best features of video and thermal are combined to provide the user with a surveillance device to capture any event.
For extra-long range applications to protect any high asset value property, the Silent Sentinel Osiris platform is the best choice for security professionals, as it utilises a broad range of uncooled and cooled thermal cameras available, combined with video and EMCCD with a detection range of up to 20 KM.
Do the benefits of Thermal Imaging cameras justify the cost?
Thermal Imaging cameras are often thought of as cameras that can see in complete darkness, through fog, smoke and other similar obstructions that limit the use of conventional video. They are also thought of as long range detection devices when paired with video analytics, as better understanding of thermal imaging enable the numerous benefits of this technology to be fully realised.
So how does it work?
Warm objects emit energy in the infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum. It is this infrared energy within the field of view that is optically captured and focused, as with visible light, and presented as an image. Thermal cameras use a Germanium lens which allows the infrared energy to pass through as thermal imaging cannot see through glass.
There are two types of thermal imagers, Cooled and Uncooled. Cooled thermal imagers are very sensitive to temperature change which enables them to operate at very long ranges, although they are much more costly and are normally only used in specialist applications within the CCTV industry. Uncooled thermal imagers are more reliable with lower maintenance and purchase cost which means they are more likely to be seen in use within CCTV schemes.
Thermal imaging cameras are specified with a Field of View (FOV) or a Focal Length and most cameras have a fixed focus non-zoom lens. Although duel FOV, and electronic focus lenses are available but they can add significantly to the cost.
The detection zones of a thermal imaging camera are specified using the Johnson Criteria Charts, which allow the detection, recognition and identification ranges to be compared between thermal cores.
Silent Sentinel have a broad range of Thermal Imaging cameras within their product range from small fixed cameras, through the Oculus Ti range to the longer range capabilities of the Osiris PTZ positioning system. “Combining video with thermal imaging in the same device is becoming the most common style of unit we supply,” said James Longcroft of Silent Sentinel.
As thermal imaging cores need to be licensed for sale in certain countries, including the Middle East, it is important that the right processes are followed. Paul Elsey, of Silent Sentinel, explained “Silent Sentinel has obtained a blanket licence for their standard thermal product range which means obtaining the right paperwork takes days and not months as it can with some products.”
Silent Sentinel also supply cooled thermal core cameras when the application demands the additional range and performance that offers. “We would be happy to speak to anyone who wants to understand more about how to select the right thermal imaging camera for the task they have in mind. We are all engineers here and enjoy sharing our knowledge and experience with our industry colleagues,” said Paul Elsey.
There is no doubt, thermal imaging does offer many benefits to the CCTV industry that justify the premium when applied properly.
Ask for advice on using thermal imaging, night vision and infrared security cameras on your security project.
Thermal camera lens facts:
- Thermal cameras generally use Germanium lenses as Germanium allows the infrared energy to pass through. Thermal cameras are unable to see through glass.
- Thermal lenses are often specified with a Field Of View (FOV) or a focal length.
- Most lower cost cameras have a fixed focus, non-zoom lens.
- Zoom, dual FOV and electronic focus lenses are available, but can add significant cost.