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Overview of NIST Thermal Imager Project. Appendix 3.J.

pdf icon Overview of NIST Thermal Imager Project. Appendix 3.J. (602 K)
Amon, F. K.

NIST SP 1040; NIST Special Publication 1040; June 2005.

Thermal Imaging Research Needs for First Responders: Workshop Proceedings. APPENDIX 3.J. December 9-10, 2004, Gaithersburg, MD, 52-54 pp, 2005.


thermal imaging; evaluation; performance metrics; heat detection; fire fighting; first responders; infrared camera; focal plane array; performance evaluation; fire tests; optical performance


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 is used to 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 has also been performed. 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 presentation.