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FLIR Systems has published an article that discusses how the Automotive Industry is adopting Optical Gas Imaging (OGI) camera technology to improve workplace safety, cost efficiency, equipment monitoring and leak tightness testing.

Optical Gas Imaging cameras are a proven technology for visualizing gases by utilizing the physics of often ‘invisible to the eye’ fugitive gas leaks. OGI cameras provide a quick, non-contact measurement capability that can be used in hard-to-access locations to safely detect small leaks from several meters away to larger leaks from hundreds of meters away. Unlike traditional gas sniffers and probes, which can be very time consuming to use, OGI cameras provide a complete picture of the area under study allowing for the immediate exclusion of areas not requiring actions. This generates considerable savings in terms of time and personnel. In addition, OGI cameras do not require systems to be shut down during inspection which can result in further savings.

The authors of the article discuss how a major automotive manufacturer has successfully employed a FLIR GF346 optical gas imaging camera to improve workplace safety in its metal casting operations, where potentially harmful levels of carbon monoxide (CO) can be generated. Further, the article goes on to discuss how dedicated optical gas imagers, such as the FLIR GF306 camera, are being increasingly used by automotive manufacturers to detect and visualize ammonia in nitriding operations quickly, from a safe distance, and without the need to interrupt the production process.

FLIR GF306 OGI camera and applications image showing leak from a nitriding furnace

In addition, the article details how testing with tracer gases, detectable by OGI cameras, has proven in recent years to be a highly effective method for detecting and measuring leaks in automotive parts such as brakes, air conditioners or hydraulic valves.

To download a full copy of this article please visit http://www.flirmedia.com/technical-note-optical-gas-imaging-for-the-automotive-industry.html or contact FLIR Systems on +32-3665-5100 / research@flir.com.

Founded in 1978, FLIR Systems is a world-leading industrial technology company focused on intelligent sensing solutions for defense, industrial and commercial applications. FLIR Systems’ vision is to be “The World’s Sixth Sense, creating technologies to help professionals make more informed decisions that save lives and livelihoods.  For more information, please visit www.flir.com and follow @flir.

FLIR Systems specialises in technologies that enhance perception and awareness.  The company brings innovative sensing solutions into daily life through its thermal imaging and visible light imaging technology and systems for measurement, diagnosis, location and advanced threat detection.  Its products improve the way people interact with the world around them, enhance productivity, increase energy efficiency and make the workplace safer.

FLIR Systems has six operating segments – surveillance, instruments, OEM and emerging markets, maritime, security and finally, detection. Of these six, ‘instruments’ is of greatest interest to trade and industry and the second largest segment in the company’s portfolio. This division provides devices that image, measure and assess thermal energy, gases and other environmental elements for industrial, commercial and scientific applications.

These products are manufactured across five production sites, three in the USA and two in Europe; Sweden and Estonia.

A model to suit every application and budget
The options that FLIR Systems provides for measuring temperature and studying thermal performance have never been greater.  Not only does the company offer a huge range of models to suit all thermal application needs but the technology is also affordable and very easy to use.  Thermal cameras now come in various shapes, sizes and degrees of sophistication and FLIR continues to invest heavily in the development of new and complementary technologies to differentiate itself from competitors.

An important milestone in the development of thermal imaging has been the introduction of the FLIR Lepton® core, a micro longwave detector, the size of a mobile SIM.  This has allowed thermal imaging to be repackaged to meet the needs of an even wider audience and, in combination with another new technology called Infrared Guided Measurement – IGM™ – has led to the development of a range of test and measurement meters with imaging capability.

Another important growth area for FLIR thermal imaging is in continuous monitoring to assure quality and safety.  Through its introduction of discrete fixed mounted thermal cameras which are fully compliant industry standard plug-and-play protocols, FLIR Systems has provided industry with infrared machine vision which is instantly ready for quick and easy network installation.

Protecting assets and people from fire is an area for which thermal imaging is least known but, thanks to FLIR Systems’ development, it is now one of the most cost-effective methods available.  Its application flexibility and rapid return on investment present an attractive proposition for any site or safety manager.

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