Infrared Training Center

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

IR Pictures Through a Grating or Mesh

Question from a customer: “Scanning through the steel grating I read a temperature 5 to 15 degrees Celsius lower than scanning without the grating. I know it is to do with the steel grating but I was wondering why.”
Great question. Let’s take a look at a typical situation with and without a grating, and then placing the grating at different distances to the camera.
The distance between the fuse and the camera remains constant, and the camera is always focused on the fuse. The only changes are the insertion of the grating, and the distance of the grating from the infrared camera.
Figure 1. Looking at a fuse directly with no grating. Max temperature is 51.4 C.
Figure 2. We have inserted the grating close to the fuse.
Max temperature dropped to 51 C, a small error.

Friday, August 18, 2017

What does Sensitivity (NETD) mean when applied to a Thermal Imager?

Sensitivity expresses the ability of an infrared camera to display a very good image even if the thermal contrast in a scene is low. Put another way, a camera with good sensitivity can distinguish objects in a scene that have very little temperature difference between them.
Sensitivity is most often measured by a parameter called Noise Equivalent Temperature Difference or NETD, for example, NETD @ 30 C : 80mK. A Kelvin degree is the SI base unit of thermodynamic temperature equal in magnitude to a degree Celsius, so mK means thousandths of a degree (80mK = 0.080 K).
What is NETD? NETD is defined as the amount of infrared radiation required to produce an output signal equal to the systems own noise. This is a noise rating of the system and should be as low as possible. We are not talking about how loud the system is here!!! We are talking about electronic noise that we translate into a temperature difference at an object temperature of 30 C (86 F).

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

New Online Course - FLIR ONE Basics


This course will introduce you to the operation of the FLIR ONE infrared camera. This course is a self paced on-demand web course, you can start as soon as you enroll and you can stop and continue where you left off at any time. This is NO CHARGE for this course.
The goal of this course is simple: By the end of this course, you will be able to operate a FLIR ONE camera. Our instructional video will familiarize you with the basic camera functionality.
Who should take this course: This course is intended for users of the FLIR ONE camera or anyone interested in purchasing one.
Prerequisites: No prior knowledge of thermography or infrared cameras is assumed.
Availability: This course is an on-demand self paced web based training course available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can begin as soon as you enroll.
We highly recommend you take a thermography course after finishing this basics course. We offer the On-Demand Introduction to Level I and Thermography for Home Inspectors classes here, or Level I, Residential Energy Auditing, or Level I - Building Investigations Courses available at .


  • Get Expert tips on IR camera operation
  • Explore the user interface buttons and menus
  • Learn how to operate the camera using a video and slide format to explore functions
  • See examples of applications for the FLIR ONE


  1. Getting to Know your FLIR ONE (Online Lesson)
  2. Next Steps (Online Lesson)
  3. Course Evaluation and Certificate Generation (Online Lesson)


  1. FLIR ONE Basics

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Call for Papers: ITC International User Conference - September 2017

Main paper presentations at the 2014 ITC User Conference in Stockholm, Sweden
Join the biggest ITC event in Europe and contribute with a paper, poster, or seminar!

ITC and FLIR Systems invite you to share your thermography expertise with other professionals in your field at the ITC User Conference in Coventry, UK, on September 27–28, 2017.

The ITC User Conference is a professional meeting place for technicians, engineers, scientists, and users of all types of infrared measurement equipment. It will cover infrared physics and its applications in a wide variety of fields, from inspection of electrical installations, building surveys, industrial and automation applications, optical gas imaging to NDT and advanced research applications.

Seminars, presentations, and poster sessions all depend on you and your contribution, so we ask you to submit your conference paper now:
  • Long paper - duration of the presentation about 40 minutes
  • Short paper - duration of the presentation about 20 minutes
  • Poster
  • Seminar - highlight trends and technologies with future importance for the field of thermography and infrared measurement.
The conference language is English.

Please submit the title and abstract by April 15, 2017 to Christiane Buchgeister at

FLIR Tools was just one of the many seminars offered at the 2014 event in Sweden

Abstracts to be no longer than 500 words. The following information to be included: preferred type of presentation, title, primary author and affiliation, co-authors and affiliations, primary author’s contact details (full postal address, phone number, e-mail address), list of key words.

Notification of Acceptance or Refusal

ITC EMEA will notify all authors of its decision on 20 May 2017. This notification will include
instructions for the selected authors on how to prepare and submit their finished paper by August 14, 2017.

To encourage the exchange of applications, information, primary authors presenting their papers will attend the conference for only € 199.

If you would like to attend the event without presenting a paper, simply register at or visit the conference website at
or email us at for more information.

Monday, January 30, 2017

New Training Dates Announced for sUAS Level I Thermography Certification

The new sUAS Level I Thermography Certification course from the Infrared Training Center (ITC) is designed for thermographers who require training specific to aerial IR inspections.  This class will cover all the potential applications, types of equipment used, what business opportunities exist, the infrared science behind how the technology works and the required regulations one needs to follow to enter this new and rapidly growing field.  As such, part of the course will also focus on introducing students to the FAA Part 107 rule which is required for all commercial sUAS operations in the United States.  

The following dates and locations have been announced in 2017:

Atlanta, GA
April 25-28

Boston, MA (ITC Headquarters - Nashua, NH)
May 15-18

Dallas, TX
June 6-9 

King of Prussia, PA
August 22-25

Nashville, TN
September 19-22

Learn More and Register Here

Attendees who successfully complete all course requirements, including their field assignment, will receive a sUAS level 1 Infrared thermography certification from ITC.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

New Online Course - Introduction to FAA Part 107 Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems

The FAA has developed regulations to allow the operation of small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS or drone) in the National Airspace System (NAS) for purposes other than hobby and recreation. The rules are specified in 14 CFR part 107 and address UAS classification, certification, and operating rules.

This course is designed to introduce applicants wishing to operate a sUAS for commercial purposes to Part 107 knowledge. In addition, we include an infrared thermography primer for those wishing to use airborne thermography as an inspection tool.

Course Structure
This course can be taken on a computer, tablet, or a smartphone. For the best experience, we suggest a device with a larger screen for easier readability. It will take approximately 1.25 hours to complete this material.

At the conclusion of each lesson, there will be a knowledge check followed by a lesson summary.

At the conclusion of the course, you may then print a course completion certificate. Presenting this certificate when registering for an instructor led Level I sUAS Certification Course will entitle you to a discount equal to the purchase price of this online course.

Learn More

Monday, October 17, 2016

InfraMation 2016 – a World Class Training Event

Nearly 450 attendees, presenters, exhibitors, and staff congregated at the Rio Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada for InfraMation 2016 in late September.

Attendees listen to a speaker in the General Session Auditorium
The event included 54 presenters, 23 clinic short courses, and 31 paper presentations on a wide variety of thermal imaging applications ranging from bats (the flying kind) to bridges to buildings.There was a lot of buzz and interest in the new field of unmanned aerial vehicles. Jan Gasparic from DJI gave one of the keynote presentations and it was very well received. Bill Schwann, an ITC instructor, managed a clinic on IR UAV applications that was standing room only and very popular. In addition, there were several exhibitors demonstrating this technology.

Corbett Lundsford gave Keynote and clinic presentations on Build Performance Testing and how Proof of Performance is Possible; while Casey Anderson, our wildlife expert, was also back and gave another amazing Keynote presentation on mountain lion behavior at night.

Corbett Lundsford answers questions during his Keynote presentation
The conference had a good mix of first time attendees and returning delegates from previous conferences, providing a dynamic mix of experienced and new thermographers exchanging ideas, information, and experiences.

With over 87% of attendees rating the conference Very Good or Excellent, I think this quote from one of the ITC staff sums up the conference experience:

"The last day in Las Vegas, a gentleman came up to me almost in tears. He said he had never been so impressed with a conference in all his life. He said the speeches, classes and workshops were great. He gained lots of knowledge and had all of his questions answered with lots of “Ah Ha” moments. He especially liked the lineup of speakers."
Joe DeMonte captivates the audience at the Mechanical Applications Clinic

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


By Ronald D. Lucier, ASNT NDT Level III/TIR
Infrared Training Center
Nashua, NH  03063

Yes, another “Ron travel story!”

Those of us who travel react differently to the Flight Attendant Safety Instructions.  Some ignore them, some sleep through, the rare person actually pays attention and the multi-million miler has heard it thousands of times.  That doesn’t mean that we don’t listen still and take it seriously.  Many years ago I actually had a flight abort a takeoff and ended up going down the emergency chute!

On 8/30/2016 I was flying Delta 1480 from Hartford, CT to Detroit, MI.  The flight had 80 empty seats, strange.  When I arrived at the gate and saw this I wondered what did other people know that I didn’t…

I had been upgraded to First Class five days earlier and chose seat 2D to get a snooze as the flight was to depart at 540 am.  The graph to the right ( shows we took off about 545 am, right on time.  The pilot brought us to 36,000 feet about 15 minutes later.  I was dozing off when my ears started popping, seriously popping.  This was sometime around 615 am.  I had to keep swallowing.  The plane was level so that meant one thing – depressurization!  Sure enough the Oxygen masks dropped down!

Well, even after 3 Million miles I must admit my heart raced a bit but I remembered the instructions on how to put my mask on.  My seat mate did too.  The other 10 First Class passengers did not!  Maybe they think hypoxia is a joke.  Maybe they can’t spell hypoxia?  If we were going to be a lawn dart I sure wanted to see it end!

Anyway, the pilot headed to lower altitudes (24,000 feet) pretty quickly while we were told it was a problem with the A/C Unit (maybe a valve?).  You can see the descent rate and final altitude below.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Why Covers are Removed for IR Surveys

By Lawrence H. Ulmer, IV
FXB Engineering

The attached images are from survey at a typical multi-tenant office building.  No visible signs of a problem on this panel with cover on and door open.  This is why we remove covers during IR surveys.

(3) identical 70A breakers feeding RTU’s
Breaker at top looked normal for no load. Slight heat differential between the two phases but nothing significant.

Breaker in middle was showing heat rise on conductors typical of load, but no measurable load on meter.  This is a result from heat building up in the breaker.

Breaker on bottom had even load on conductors, but (1) conductor significantly hotter than the other.  Either a termination issue or the breaker is failing internally (or both).

E.C. touched conductor while getting load, arcing started to appear behind middle breaker.
You can see where the arcing was occurring on the other images where the breaker bolted to bus.   Looks like a bright copper weld spot surrounding by carbon deposits.

We left the room, called the property manager to get approval to de-energize the circuit and remove the breakers.   They lost the operation of (1) HVAC unit and can now schedule repair.

This was old federal pacific equipment that has been poorly maintained.   If left unaddressed they would have lost at a minimum the entire panel if the breaker feeding it operated properly.  Most likely increased physical damage to other breakers in the panel and a fault condition that could have tripped a breaker upstream somewhere dropping more load.     This panel also just so happened to be sitting directly above the desk of the facility maintenance personnel, less than 3’ from where his head would be while sitting at the desk.  Code violation but common occurrence in old buildings.

This incident being detected early just saved the management company thousands of dollars (possibly >$10k)  and potentially prevented personal injury (+$50k easy in insurance deductible).

Editor: Lawrence earns 6 ITC certification renewal credits for his story.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Traveling? Bring Extra Towels (and an Infrared Camera Too)

Ron Lucier, ASNT NDT Level III – TIR
Sr. Instructor – ITC

Time to call Housekeeping and ask for more towels.
For much of the year ITC instructors are on the road running certification classes at a variety of locations, including a number of onsite courses that are less expensive and more convenient for customers.  We look forward to these trips as there are many fun and interesting places to go and teach.  The hotels where we stay for these types of classes, however, can sometimes deliver unexpected surprises as happened to me recently at an onsite course in central Pennsylvania.

When I made my reservation it was with a major chain and within a mile of the customer site – perfect!  No traffic jams to deal with and a shopping center with restaurants a mile away.  It was expensive, but this is summer and with a major amusement park 20 miles away, and in the middle of Penn Dutch country, well, best to grin and bear it!

I drove from Central Massachusetts arriving just before a huge thunderstorm.  I wasn’t in my first floor room for more than 5 minutes when the rain suddenly hit, hard!  It was during this torrential downpour that I began to hear something rather odd – water dripping.  Looking around the room the source of the noise was the window and it wasn’t simply dripping – it was pouring in right near the air conditioner!  I shut the unit off because I know electricity and water probably shouldn’t mix.  I immediately called the Front Desk and was told Maintenance would be around soon.