Infrared Thermometer: 9 Uses, How It Works, and Accuracy

By | May 30, 2020
Infrared Thermometer

The infrared thermometer is now found in crowded places, such as the MRT station, the airport, to the entrance in some offices.

This tool is used to measure body temperature, as a prevention of Coronavirus spread. Officers will usually point the thermometer to the forehead of the person to be measured the temperature.

The red laser beam helps the officer direct the part that he wants to measure. The body temperature will then be displayed on the screen at the back. Temperature measurements were apparently using infrared rays (infra red / IR).

As the name suggests, an infrared thermometer, or commonly called a firing thermometer, is a type of temperature gauge shaped like a butt of a gun, which can detect the temperature of an object.

The infrared thermometer offers the ability to detect the temperature optics as long as the object is observed, the energy radiation of infrared rays is measured, and served as temperature. They offer fast and accurate temperature measurement methods with objects from a distance and without touch, the ideal situation where objects are fast moving, far away, very hot, in a dangerous environment, and/or the need to avoid contamination of objects (such as food, medical devices, medicines, products or tests, etc.).

Infrared temperature gauge products are available on the market, ranging from flexible to special functions or standard thermometers (such as images), to more complex readership systems and thermal imaging cameras. It is an image or picture of the industry-specific infrared thermometer that is used to monitor liquid material temperature for the purpose of quality control in manufacturing processes.

Infrared Thermometer Uses

This tool is usually and very useful in the measurement of high kitchen or furnace in the smelting industry or surface temperature that is not possible to touch, and also in other common uses, such as:

  • Measuring the temperature of moving objects, for example: Conveyor, machinery, etc..
  • Measuring the temperature of dangerous objects, such as: High voltage, high distance and hard to reach, etc.
  • Temperatures are too high and difficult to approach or touch, for example: Furnace, thermocouple, etc.
  • Detects clouds for remote telescopic operating systems.
  • Inspect the mechanical equipment or electrical switch box or hotspot channel.
  • Check the heating or oven temperature, for control and calibration purposes.
  • Detecting point of Fire or indicating diagnosis on the production of electrical circuit boards.
  • Check the fire point for firefighters.
  • Detecting the body temperature of living creatures, such as humans, animals, etc.

How Infrared Thermometer Work?

Although the goal is the same, to measure temperature, the way the firing thermometer works is very different from the regular thermometer.

As seen in the video, to be able to detect the temperature of an object, the firing thermometer will absorb electromagnetic radiation (infrared rays) that are actually transmitted or reflected by an object being targeted.

The infrared rays are then going to penetrate the thermometer lens and are delivered to a temperature detector called Thermopile.

The Thermopile module then converts the radiation beam into a hot energy to be converted into electrical energy.

This electrical energy is to be measured by the thermometer and will output the result of the temperature magnitudes displayed on the thermometer screen.

It is worth noting that the thermometer device itself does emit a laser beam. Instead of detecting temperature, the beam only serves as a guide to aim at the object to measure its temperature.

Infrared thermometer Accuracy

Infrared thermometer is prone to wrong measuring body temperature

Temperature measurements using an infrared thermometer should ensure that the appliance is well calibrated, and how it is suitable for measuring the body temperature as well.

The farther away the distance, the wider the area measured. Therefore, if not well done, the measurement of body temperature using an infrared thermometer can risk mismeasuring. So, what about its effectiveness when used in detecting Covid-19?

The infrared thermometer does have different accuracy, about one degree, compared to the other thermometer. How the user differs, depends on the sensitivity, whether closer or slightly further.

Read also: Personal Protective Equipment For Work Safety and Health Worker

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