Over a year ago, I was asked by SPIE to serve as Guest Editor for an issue on applications of infrared technology. Inasmuch as infrared technology is being used in more and varied applications every day, the task of identifying the specific applications to be included in this issue was difficult. Suggestions were solicited from a number of people in the field regarding the composition of this issue. From their responses, it became readily apparent that interest existed in discussing applications of infrared technology from the view-point of a system engineer. Also, it seemed appropriate to discuss certain components from the same view-point. Personally, I found this concept intriguing in that what is often of interest to the component engi-neer may not be of major significance to the system engineer. The system engineer generally desires to know how a given component will affect the design and performance of a particular system. The paper by Dr. Barhydt on the performance of nearly-Blip detectors exemplifies this point of view. In any case, each author was encouraged to write his paper for the infrared system engineer.