A few years back I was approached about building an infrared thermal film product for aerial surveillances.  Up until then, my experience with thermal film was for shooting targets and thermal ID panels.  

After a strategy session with colleagues, I cut out an A and a 1 from a thermal film roll and attached them to the roof of my car. 

I didn’t have access to a helicopter or drone, so I did the next best thing. 

I found a tall  building nearby and with permission, climbed up on the roof. I took my thermal (FLIR) imager and asked my assistant to drive by in the car. 

Sure enough I was right!

Looking down I clearly saw the outstanding contrast of the thermal A1 digits on the car. 

Even though the initial concept worked, I also realized much work and durability testing needed to be done for this to work for the long haul. 

 

A1-thermal-view with infrared thermal film

Fast forward 5 years. We started with 1 thermal film… but ended up with 3 to market!

And while in the end all 3 films are very similar in function, the differences are enough to warrant a careful examination to determine which is best for your job. 

Regardless if you use a helicopter or UAS thermal imaging sensors, hand held thermal imagers, or thermal weapon sights, the addition of thermal film will make your operations safer.

High Contrast Infrared Thermal Film

No power thermal targets , terrorists viewed with a thermal sight.

 Our original thermal film and like its name, the film produces a high contrast in the range of an emissivity of 10-20%. Keep in mind, the lower the emissivity the better the contrast.

The better the contrast, the better your eye detects it.

 

Who uses the film?

The Military, Law Enforcement, Sportmen, and Hunters use high contrast film primarily for training shooting targets.

How the film is used

  • Shooting Targets – #1 use of the film is training and zeroing your thermal weapon sights. The targets are cut from the film in a variety of shapes and sizes. Custom images are printed on the film for life-like training scenarios. 
  • Vehicle Identification –  When durability is not a factor, the high contrast film is built on a magnet for quick on and off applications. Improves communication between air and ground units.
  • TIP Panels – Thermal identification panels used by the military for landing markers and vehicle ID. Improves communication between air and ground units and prevents friendly fire.

Durability

GOOD ★★★

Not recommended to be left outside in the elements. Chemicals will destroy the outer coating. Scratches easily and a short  3-6 mo life expectancy.

Emissivity 

GREAT ★★★★★

By far the best thermal film contrast available. If durability and longevity are not a concern, this film is for you.  

 

More Features

  • Available in tan, green, and brown
  • Peel and Stick or magnet backing

Extreme Infrared Thermal Film

SWAT team preparing for pursuit, with infrared thermal film K9

Built for those rough and tumble outside operations.

Emissivity is slightly higher than our high contrast film coming in at a range of 30-40%. 

 

Who uses the film?

Operations that benefit most from Extreme thermal film are law enforcement agencies; Police, Sheriff, FBI, Secret Service, and  Border Patrol. Search and rescue, SWAT, K9 and surveillance operations. 

How the film is used

  • Vehicle Identification – #1 use of the film is infrared thermal markers attached to vehicles with a permanent adhesive or strong magnet. The targets are cut from the film in a variety of shapes and sizes. . 
  • Personal Identification – Thermal patches are attached to officers and K9 to monitor movements on the ground and to distinguish the good guys from the suspects. Sportsmen also wear to prevent mistaken identity. 
  • Ground Control Points –Custom film shapes provide surveillance details, data collection, research and development feedback, and information from those hard to reach places.

Durability

GREAT ★★★★★

What you give up in contrast is gained in extreme durability. Built for outside abuse, this film has a 3 yr. life expectancy.

Emissivity 

GOOD ★★★★

A slightly higher emissivity translates into a good not great contrast in comparison to the high contrast film. Film produces a more than adequate contrast for identification and protection. 

More Features

  • Available in black
  • Peel and Stick or magnet backing

Clear Infrared Thermal Film

SWAT team preparing for pursuit, with thermal K9 on vehicle

Like its name indicates, this film is clear and transparent.

Built for more covert operations and less detection by the naked eye. 

Who uses the film?

Law Enforcement use this film for undercover operations. 

How the film is used

Mark a suspect or undercover vehicle to covertly track its’ movement.

Durability

GOOD ★★★★

A 1 yr life expectancy

Emissivity 

FAIR ★★★

The 40-50% emissivity of the clear film is almost half of our high contrast film.

Start now to improve your outcomes

In the end, if your operation deploys thermal imaging devices of any kind, include a High Contrast, Extreme or Clear thermal film piece and advance your outcome.

Start now to improve your shooting target training, eliminate your confusion, and boost your protection!

Contact us and begin the conversation!

443.292.8885 … Ask for Tom or Jacob

 
 The Author

Tom Boyer profile picture

Tom founded IR.Tools™ in 2006. He has embraced manufacturing premium IR patches, panels, thermal markers, and thermal targets to better protect and train the military and law enforcement communities. Always the innovator, he is always thinking out of the box. Currently he has 21 awarded patents, and 14 patents pending. Tom received his BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from the Univ. of MD, College Park and his MBA from Regents Univ.