Thermal imaging cameras delve into volcanic activity

Aug. 19, 2011
FLIR Advanced Thermal Solutions has released a new application report that provides an insight into how researchers around the world are using the company's thermal imaging cameras to conduct research into various aspects of volcanic activity.

Croissy-Beaubourg, France--FLIR Advanced Thermal Solutions has released a new application report that provides an insight into how researchers around the world are using the company's thermal imaging cameras to conduct research into various aspects of volcanic activity.

Specifically, the report shows how the company's SC660 and SC655 thermal imaging cameras are being used by researchers to not only see volcanic heat, but also to get non-contact temperature readings from a safe distance, which keeps researchers out of harm's way.

Although predicting volcanic activity is becoming more reliable, many volcanic phenomena are still highly unpredictable. The report presents examples of the company's thermal imaging cameras being used to safely investigate dangerous phenomena, including determining the ascent path of hydrothermal fluids, volcanic crust movement, and predicting degassing sites of volcano's exhibiting fumarolic activity, a volcanic phenomenon where pressurized fluids, mostly water and CO2, heated up by volcanic warmth change into gas extremely quickly, often leading to devastating gas explosions.

The report concludes that not only can thermal imaging cameras be used to measure and map active lava flows and to detect new cracks where hot gases escape, but they can provide extensive analysis of the surface temperature, bringing researchers a step closer to understanding the mechanics behind volcanic phenomena. Understanding the mechanics behind volcanic incidents will help to improve volcanic warning systems, which will in turn help to save lives.

To view the report, please visit http://www.flir.com/uploadedFiles/Thermography/MMC/Brochures/T820320/T820320_EN.pdf.

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