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Thermal imaging

FLIR Systems has published an application note that describes how their ETS320 thermal imaging camera is being used by Isomedia (Stuttgart, Germany) to investigate and speed-up the repair of assembled printed circuit boards (PBA).

Isomedia is a leading customer service provider and same day repair centre for leading brands of mobile devices in Germany. To speed up their repair work, Isomedia has for the last four years been using FLIR thermal cameras to locate problems and identify what is happening on a PBA.

Earlier this year the company invested in a FLIR ETS320 non-contact thermal measurement system. The new portable system, which pairs a high sensitivity infrared camera with an integrated stand, has enabled Isomedia to undertake hands-free thermal analysis of printed circuit boards and other small electronics. The staff at Isomedia has responded enthusiastically to the FLIR ETS320 because it is very easy to use and in a very short time has allowed them to troubleshoot if there is a problem with a PBA and what the problem is. Beneficially being a portable device the FLIR ETS320 can also easily be shared among multiple technicians if necessary. Overall the investment in the FLIR ETS320 is helping the company to work faster and improve the quality of its customer service.

By offering more than 76,000 points of temperature measurement, the FLIR ETS320 offers the ability to monitor power consumption, detect hot spots, and identify potential points of failure during product development. The camera’s high measurement accuracy and its ability to visualise small temperature differences helps evaluate thermal performance, ensure environmental compatibility, and troubleshoot problems for a wide range of electronic products. FLIR designed the ETS320 for hands-free use in a lab, with a microscope-style stand that’s quick to set-up and simplified features that allow users to focus on their work instead of on camera controls.

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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