Thermal Measurement of Low Emissivity Targets

FLIR Systems has published a new technical note that investigates and describes how to use low-cost materials to increase target emissivity to enable accurate measurement using a thermal imaging camera

Clean, unoxidized, bare metal surfaces such as are found in many R&D applications have low emissivity. Consequently they are difficult to analyse with a thermal imaging camera. To get good accurate temperature measurements there is a consequent need to increase the emissivity of these problematic targets.

The technical note provides an informative introduction to emissivity and how a target’s emissivity, reflectance and thermal conductivity values are highly dependent on material properties. The authors describe several cost effective techniques to compensate for low emissivity based upon reducing the reflectance of the target enabling a significant improvement in measurement accuracy. Further a simple technique to facilitate fault finding on populated printed circuit boards (PCB) containing a variety of metal and plastic components using a thermal imaging camera is described.

For a copy of this new technical note please click here or contact FLIR Systems on +32-3665-5100 or

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