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Wildlife in Infrared

Long ago, I once taught a course in a hotel that also housed a “disco”, which if you remember what they were, gives you an idea of how long ago it was! One evening after class, a student talked the DJ into plugging the video cable into the infrared imager we were using and suddenly […]

Reflecting on Electromagnetic Radiation

Reflections, no matter what part of the electromagnetic spectrum we are operating in, are part of life. All materials are partially reflective of some wave lengths and none are perfectly reflective.

We are all familiar with mirrors, but watch a baby or a puppy when they are first looking into a mirror and learning how to […]

Stack-Effect O’Lantern Physics Explained

Check out this diagram for a festive explanation of the stack-effect!

Hope you all had a happy Halloween!

Phantoms, Ghosts and a Few Goblins

Not unexpectedly a few goblins showed up this week in my neighborhood. Fun to see whether in the visible or the infrared part of the spectrum.

1. A pair of Jack-o-Lanterns can have fun even in the infrared spectrum.

Mr. Jack-o-Lantern is not unlike many of the electrical problems thermographers see.  Fairly cool on the exterior, but […]

Fall is in the Air (and everything else), Part Three

As I’ve written about over the past two weeks, there are a number of factors that determine what the temperature of a surface will be beside the energy inherent to it. We need to understand them so that we can make a valid analysis of what is really going on.

As an example, imagine an abnormally […]

Fall is in the Air (and the Wind), Part Two

Last week we focused on the affect radiational cooling and heating has on surface temperature. If you still have any doubts about this, just go outside in the sun and again on a clear night and observe the great variation of temperatures you find on your thermal images. Many of them are related to radiation.

When […]

Thinking Thermally in the Fall

“Ground fog” is common in many areas in the fall as cold air settles in the valleys and the moisture in it condenses. The changes in color of the fall foliage are also closely related to temperature change and the physiology of the trees.

Fall has continued to come on quickly. While we’ve enjoyed a […]

Heat Transfer, Temperature and R-value

Hopefully many of you tried my suggestion last week of filling a mug with hot coffee or tea and observing it with your imager as it went through a thermal cycle. If not, please do so as there are many valuable lessons to be learned. Also useful is distilling the temperature changes for the mug […]

What Does the Surface Temperature Really Mean?

We know the direction of heat transfer is from hotter to cooler, but sometimes the temperatures we measure can be misleading. Particularly, when the process of transfer is still in transition, the temperatures will not have peaked yet. Also when a surface is being strongly influenced by outside forces—such as evaporation, sun, wind […]

Slowing Heat Transfer

A tea cozy keeps a pot of tea warmer longer by reducing heat transfer, primarily conductive transfer.

My blog last week was changed at the last minute to talk about Hurricane Irene. Although she “cooled” compared to what was predicted, the damage was significant, especially here in Vermont where 7 inches of rain in our […]