Thermography is a specialized application of drones, mainly due to the expensive and complex hardware needed. But it can also be a very profitable field for drone pilots to explore. How does thermography work and what kind of services can be offered with this equipment?Thermal energy is detected using special FPA (focal plane matrices), which can be divided into two types: refrigerated and uncooled detectors. For more technical work, such as utility inspections, an RGB camera will not suffice.
To do this type of work, you need a payload capable of generating thermal images. Thermography can be less effective in situations where detail is expected but the surface temperatures of objects are very uniform, such as printed text and images. Helicopters equipped with image stabilizing gimbals can add another dimension to aerial thermography and the captured image data. Drones are especially useful for this type of work due to their speed and the unique aerial perspective they offer. The DJI Zenmuse XT2 integrates a high-resolution FLIR thermal sensor and a 4K visual camera with DJI's leading stabilization and artificial intelligence technology to quickly transform aerial data into powerful information. Both images are transmitted live with the remote control at the same time and can be viewed separately as picture-on-picture or as an overlay. Standard thermal imaging usually appears as a faded image in which hot spots are shown in bright yellow or white, while dark spots are shown in deep blue or violet.
Thermal cameras only require the heat of an object to capture the image or video of a scene. Thermal drones that use vision imaging cameras have many beneficial uses by detecting heat from almost all objects and materials and converting them into images and videos. The Duo Pro R is an all-in-one package that can obtain aerial thermal images on its own. IR thermography is the process of transforming an infrared image into a radiometric one that allows you to read the temperature values of the image. You can create your own aerial thermography solution consisting of a drone, a mount, a gimbal and a FLIR or other thermal camera, or you can purchase a complete package from a service provider such as DSLRpros. To facilitate the general interpretation of thermal images and facilitate subsequent presentation, the thermal image can be artificially colored.
Companies that hire aerial thermography services can be very demanding with respect to the drone pilots they hire, so you will need to put your best foot forward. The name “Dual” comes from its two integrated sensors: a 12 MP CMOS sensor for visual photography and a radiometric FLIR sensor for thermal imaging. Many thermal cameras can also apply color profiles to these images, showing the hottest objects in yellow and the coldest in blue, for example, to facilitate the comparison of temperatures in the image. It is also a dual camera that allows thermal images to be superimposed on images captured by the DJI 4K camera. Aerial thermography with drones offers many advantages over traditional methods. It is faster, more efficient, more cost-effective, and provides better results than traditional methods.
Drone pilots who specialize in aerial thermography have access to cutting-edge technology that allows them to capture high-quality images from any angle or altitude. With this technology, they can provide valuable insights into areas that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to access. Whether you are looking for an all-in-one package or want to build your own custom solution, aerial thermography with drones is an exciting field that offers many opportunities for drone pilots. With the right equipment and knowledge, you can unlock the potential of this technology and provide valuable services to your clients.