5 August 2004 Evaluation of thermal imaging cameras used in fire fighting applications
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Thermal imaging cameras are rapidly becoming integral equipment for first responders for use in structure fires. Currently there are no standardized test methods or performance metrics available to the users or manufacturers of these instruments. The Building and Fire Research Laboratory (BFRL) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is developing a testing facility and methods to evaluate the performance of thermal imagers used by fire fighters to search for victims and hot spots in burning structures. The facility will test the performance of currently available imagers and advanced fire detection systems, as well as serve as a test bed for new technology. An evaluation of the performance of different thermal imaging detector technologies under field conditions is also underway. Results of this project will provide a quantifiable physical and scientific basis upon which industry standards for imaging performance, testing protocols and reporting practices related to the performance of thermal imaging cameras can be developed. The background and approach that shape the evaluation procedure for the thermal imagers are the primary focus of this paper.
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Francine Amon, Francine Amon, Nelson Bryner, Nelson Bryner, Anthony Hamins, Anthony Hamins, "Evaluation of thermal imaging cameras used in fire fighting applications", Proc. SPIE 5407, Infrared Imaging Systems: Design, Analysis, Modeling, and Testing XV, (5 August 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.564331; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.564331

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