Last week I had an opportunity to play with an infrared camera. Ayse, who works at FLIR Systems, was kind enough to bring one of the testing units from her office to Klättercentret, where we did some bouldering and took photos of one another.

The camera we used was a P640. This camera’s lenses are not made of normal silicate glass; they’re made of an oxide of the element Germanium. They are silver in appearance and are opaque to visible light. The camera is sensitive in the long-wavelength (8–15 µm) infrared portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Warm objects emit IR radiation in this range, with a wavelength inversely proportional to their temperature. What you see is a picture of the heat being emitted from the body. For this reason, photography in this range of the EM spectrum is often referred to as thermography

In the photo composite above, you can see Paula’s profile in both visible and long-wavelength infrared light. The visible light photograph was taken with my D300. I’ve posted many more thermographs from the evening to a new Infrared photo set. All of the photos from that evening, including visible light photos, can be viewed here.

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