In the domain of FLIR imaging systems, FLIR imaging refers to night vision technology. Military personnel used thermal imaging for surveillance purposes. In addition, they used it for target acquisition and tracking as well. The helicopters that these personnel use have forward looking infrared units mounted on them. This enables these units to provide the pilots with thermal images miles ahead of the helicopter. Not surprisingly, fighter planes use thermal infrared imaging systems to locate and control fire when zeroing in on specific targets.
It is common knowledge that night vision devices rely on light amplification for producing images. However, thermal image cameras take traditional light amplification one step further. The human eye can only see the narrow middle band of visible light that comprises the colours of the rainbow. However, thermal infrared imagers can depict the energy transmitted in the infrared wavelength into coherent data. The imager can process this data into a visible light spectrum video display as well.
It is worth highlighting that all objects above zero degrees Kelvin typically emit thermal infrared energy. This is sufficient for understanding why thermal imagers can see all objects regardless of the prevalent visibility conditions. On the battlefield, this technology can give an army a significant advantage. Stealth technology has advanced rapidly in recent times. This technology has made machines that even the best radars cannot detect. In addition, it has created machines with minimal infrared heat signature. This signature enables thermally guided missiles to home in on their targets. Despite this, FLIR devices can track the thermal signature of battle machines and soldiers very easily. Night vision devices can, on occasions, be easy to fool. But, thermal imaging devices simply offer intruders and other objects no place for hiding or concealing themselves.