Yes, it's incredibly cool.

incredibly powerful, too.

Thermal Infrared

Thermal infrared is heat. All real-world objects emit thermal infrared radiation.  This radiation is can be captured with a camera and the results visualized as a "heat picture". These pictures are useful for monitoring the condition of electrical connections or other devices where it is either dangerous or inconvenient to measure in a more conventional way.

Thermal infrared photo of a sugar beet piles.  The image shows an area of spoilage in the bottom pile.

Near-Infrared

The near-infrared is the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum just beyond what the human eye can see.  Plants and vegetation are highly reflective in the near-infrared portion of the electromagnetic spectrum.  Using special cameras, we are able to identify areas of stress in a crop using this infrared reluctance.

 

Below is a color and color infrared composite image.  This field is at an experiment station, and it contains several different crops.  There is a lot more contrast seen in the color-infrared photo than in the normal color image.

 

Through careful and repeated monitoring of a field, discrepancies can be identified.  Things like irrigation anomalies and other sources of stress are visible much sooner in an infrared photo.

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