Thermal Imaging Tests on Conservation Drones

Over the last week, ResearchDrones.com and ConservationDrones.org conducted a series of tests of low cost thermal imaging cameras.

Models tested:
1. FLIR HS-324 Patrol 19mm Thermal camera (320 x 240 res) (link)
2. NEC F30 Thermal Shot Infrared Thermal Imager (160 x 120 res) (link)

Above: Flight tests (cloudy daylight, ~3 pm winter afternoon)

FLIR image taken by conservation drone from ~100 m above ground. FLIR camera tilted ~40 degrees downwards.

FLIR image at 100 m above ground.

 

NEC image taken by conservation drone from ~100 m above ground. NEC camera was downward facing.

NEC image at 100 m above ground.

 

Ground tests (complete darkness, ~9 pm winter night):

Conclusion:

The FLIR is the clear winner in terms of picture resolution and thermal sensitivity. But the FLIR HS-324 is also much heavier and costly (~600 g, ~US$ 7,000) than the NEC (~300 g, US$ 4,000).

Based on these tests, we believe the ideal solution might be the more compact FLIR MS-324 (320 x 240 res) (link), which has the same resolution as the FLIR HS-324, but weighs much less (340 g) and is also more affordable (~US$ 3,000).

(*Note: We are not sponsored by the companies hyper-linked to in this post. The cameras we tested were either rented or on loan from colleagues.)

Views: 3100

Tags: conservation, drones, infrared, night, thermal, vision


3D Robotics
Comment by Chris Anderson on January 5, 2013 at 9:47am

Impressive! Thanks for sharing.


Moderator
Comment by Robert Krogh (hooks) on January 5, 2013 at 11:55am
Is there an AV out on the MS 324
Comment by lianpinkoh on January 5, 2013 at 11:57am

Moderator
Comment by Robert Krogh (hooks) on January 5, 2013 at 12:00pm
Oh found it! 9hz refresh rate..
Comment by Hunter Parris on January 5, 2013 at 1:51pm

$3K isn't bad for the 320x240 resolution.  I'm waiting for SPi to come out with a sUAV FLIR camera ready for flight!

Comment by Joshua Ott on January 5, 2013 at 2:35pm
Thanks for sharing your results.
That's a nice antenna tracker,btw.
: )

Moderator
Comment by Robert Krogh (hooks) on January 5, 2013 at 3:27pm
Here you Can see the difference between the 9 hz and 30 hz version

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=A_7TpS4cRWo#/watch?v=A_7TpS4cRWo
Comment by Jesse on January 5, 2013 at 4:55pm

I *seriously* want a thermal camera :-(

Comment by Simon Wunderlin on January 5, 2013 at 5:21pm

Joshua Ott: we thought we'd go for as much CPU power we can get with the antenna tracking.

Comment by Josh Potter on January 5, 2013 at 5:51pm

FLir 320 x 240 30Hz NTSC $2,500 

Weight is 360 grams (.8 lbs) 
I think this is the same camera in that handheld one but with the higher refresh rate.

Comment

You need to be a member of DIY Drones to add comments!

Join DIY Drones

© 2014   Created by Chris Anderson.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service