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Proceedings Paper

Uncooled infrared thermal imaging systems for law enforcement
Author(s): Robert J. S. Kyle; Douglas K. Van Dover
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Paper Abstract

For over 18 years, Texas Instruments (TI) has been developing low cost uncooled thermal imaging technology for night vision applications. Using technology developed with support from several government agencies, TI is offering this dual-use technology in a low cost system for police cruisers and other surveillance applications. TI has teamed with Highes Aircraft to provide NIGHTSIGHTTM, now being marketed jointly. Because NIGHSIGHT is a passive thermal image, it gives law enforcement officers the ability to see in total darkness. This capability gives the uncooled system distinct advantages over image intensifiers which require some degree of visible light. It also differs from typical cryogenic or cooled IR systems because it does not contain a cryogenic cooler mechanism or a scanner which lowers the complexity, costs, size, weight, and power consumption. Police across the US have tested prototype sensors with positive results. Police officers often praise the ability to see in total darkness and report the many advantages of the system and how it changes their perspective on law enforcement. Systems have also been provided to the Drug Enforcement Agency, INS border patrol, prison security staff, Baltimore-Washington International Airport security, Texas Parks and Wildlife Service and the Los Angeles Harbor Patrol and have been used in a variety of security and surveillance situations. The paper will address the implementation of the technology; discuss barriers to use such as cost, awareness, and system understanding, and examine the impact of the technology on the effectiveness of law enforcement at night.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 May 1995
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 2497, Public Safety/Law Enforcement Technology, (30 May 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.210486
Show Author Affiliations
Robert J. S. Kyle, Texas Instruments Inc. (United States)
Douglas K. Van Dover, Texas Instruments Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2497:
Public Safety/Law Enforcement Technology
Raymond J. Mataloni Sr.; Raymond D. Mintz, Editor(s)

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