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Oct 11, 2012, 10:49 AM
Registered User

FLIR Quark IR camera

I'm not sure if this belongs here or in the AP section but it applies to both.

This is just something I'm thinking about for way, WAY down the road (due to finances). I've thought it would be cool/interesting/usefull to have an IR camera as well as a visual camera for FPV/AP/S&R type flying, especially for use at night or when looking for heat signatures (esp. people). I always thought IR cameras were huge, bulky things though so never really looked into it. Then I saw that FLIR has a new(ish) LWIR camera called the Quark, which boasts up to 640x480@60Hz image (for NTSC in US, export versions are ~8Hz due to ITAR restrictions) in an uncooled package that's only 17x22x22mm (w/o lens) and weighs <30g with lens!

Here's the product page with pics and specs:

This is really just a "wish list for when I hit the lottery" kind of thing, but I was wondering if anybody has tried using these? I haven't found any demo footage but that's understandable with the ITAR restrictions. The demo photographs in this brochure sure do look good though:

Any idea how much they actually cost? I don't want to bother a FLIR rep when I know I can't afford it anyways, but I'm still curious. It would be really cool to be able to flip between IR/Vis, but perhaps even cooler to have them overlaid!
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Oct 17, 2012, 06:56 AM
Registered User
Cool thing...
Me want badly!!!
Oct 17, 2012, 07:45 AM
400' ..... NOT
Martin Y's Avatar
There is an old video here someone had one on their plane to track & hunt farrow pigs
Oct 17, 2012, 10:08 AM
Registered User

The FLIR cameras are really nice. I found a video on youtube of a quadrotor flying at night with one of this cameras. Really good.

RFTC: Flying FPV at Night with a FLIR Thermal Imaging Camera

Oct 17, 2012, 03:04 PM
Registered User
Thanks guys! I saw that video before, I think FLIR might be a must-have for night time FPV flying! I'm going to contact one of the FLIR reps to just get a ballpark estimate so I know how many years I need to save up before I can get one
Oct 26, 2012, 12:22 PM
Registered User
Well, looks like I'll be saving for a while! The rep told me the Quark is approximately $4000 and the slightly larger model named the Tau is about $3300! I'll probably have to wait a few years before I can even consider buying one of these cameras!
Oct 26, 2012, 01:08 PM
400' ..... NOT
Martin Y's Avatar
I almost got a job there a couple of years back. They're only 5 miles from me.
Oct 26, 2012, 01:28 PM
Registered User
Originally Posted by Martin Y
I almost got a job there a couple of years back. They're only 5 miles from me.
Hmmm, maybe you could get a job there and talk them into giving me a product sample to review?
Oct 26, 2012, 04:00 PM
400' ..... NOT
Martin Y's Avatar
I wish. They did show me some reallly really neat things (which I couldn't have)
Oct 26, 2012, 06:12 PM
fly by night
BCSaltchucker's Avatar
OK. I will consider it at $400, but not $4k! ouch

would be absolutely an excellent item on a SAR UAV, though. Our VGA cams are pretty useless for finding stuff on the ground.
Oct 26, 2012, 06:26 PM
Registered User
Clippedwing's Avatar
I have these at work - 24 of them...the belong to the MOD though :-(
Oct 26, 2012, 06:45 PM
Registered User
Daemon's Avatar
$4k is not that bad considering what you're getting.
Used to be $10-20k for a large handheld unit.

The main problem I see is the widest FoV lens is 13mm which works out to 45 degrees
horizontal FoV.
That's going to feel like flying through binoculars compared to the 70-100+ degrees FoV
we're normally used to.

Oct 30, 2012, 01:13 AM
Registered User
BushmanLA's Avatar
I fly with a 19mm lens and yes it is really hard at first, but you get used to it after a while. Landings are a bear and you have to line up from a long way out.

I'm using the Tau 320. The quark is a little smaller, and supposedly their autogain software has gotten better.

I have a handful of videos of it in use if you want to see what its like.

This one contains hunting footage but nothing can be seen getting killed in the following vids so I can stop earning points.

Dehogaflier Hunt Gone Wrong Part 1 (3 min 8 sec)

Dehogaflier 8-20-11 Thermal Hunt, Missed Pigs (5 min 42 sec)

Dehogaflier 8-19-11 First Air Assist Kill (2 min 33 sec)
Last edited by BushmanLA; Nov 01, 2012 at 04:22 PM.
Oct 31, 2012, 05:21 PM
Registered User
Ceros007's Avatar
but it's uncooled. Isn't that a problem on a hot summer day?
Nov 01, 2012, 04:23 PM
Registered User
BushmanLA's Avatar
Originally Posted by Ceros007
but it's uncooled. Isn't that a problem on a hot summer day?
Not really. You can find warm bodies easier when it is cold outside, but since there is a temperature gradient on a warm day just like a hot day, you can see just fine in both warm and cold weather.

The only time it gets hard to see is right after a rain or in really thick fog. When everything is wet, it all starts to look like the same temperature.

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