IR reflective and Thermal films?
What are they and why does it matter to you?
Most importantly, each film will protect you. But grasping their differences – the what and how they protect you will assure a much safer, successful, operation.
IR reflective and Thermal films are part of the Electromagnetic Spectrum: Near, Mid and Far Infrared. These infrared energies are invisible to the human eye. To view them, you need a high tech camera, most often called a NVG, NOD, FLIR, or Thermal device.
While technically thermal is part of the infrared spectrum, our common definition for IFF protection, distinguishes infrared from thermal. IR reflective or Infrared is from the “Near” side of the spectrum. Thermal is from the “Mid and Long” side of the spectrum.
Below are 4 key differences to consider when choosing your IFF (friend or foe) protection.
1. Different cameras detect IR and Thermal films
2. Inside or Outside?
Thermal film is most effective when used outside. It works best when the film looks towards a clear sky. Detection 24/7.
Infrared film is effective inside or outside. But it is hard to see in well lit areas. The darker the better for your IR glow to stand out.
3. How your eye views the infrared signature
Thermal film projects a black and white contrast to stand out from its surroundings.
Infrared film “glows”. The glow detects who is who and where they are.
4. Environmental Factors
Thermal film is detected through smoke, fog and sandstorms. Water will temporarily disable film but will not damage it.
Infrared film while versatile under most conditions, does lose reflection or glow in rain, smoke, fog.
Yes, Thermal and IR reflective films are from the same family… same DNA.
But their distinct differences and functions do matter to your safety and operation completion.
And ultimately your family reunion.
Don’t hesitate to contact me, Tom, I will discuss and discover which film is best for you.