1. #1
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post BST, Microbolometer, Cantilever??????

    Any info about the techs. of imagers? Is BST better than Microbolometer?
    Is the "Uncooled" Microbolometer going to last in a thermally insulated device?
    When is the next technology "Cantilever Chip" due to hit the market?

    Any help out there????

    ONE REQUEST, IF YOU'RE A REP. FROM A MANUFACTURER, SAY SO!

  2. #2
    IRalltheway
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    BST is proven, but old school. Microbolometer is here to stay and will be around for a long time and will last in a thermally insualted package. The image quality is far superior than the BST espescially in fire conditions. Plus, it allows for new and unique features that were impossible with the BST. The "Cantilever Chip" is an alternative technology, but has not been proven in fire conditions and has not been commerically produced in quality numbers. So, in other words don't count on seeing this technology in the fire service for a long, long, long time.

  3. #3
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    IR, The problem with the uncooled Microbolometer is the heat it generates. Most manufacturers have placed 1, 2 or 3 heat sinks to counter some of this heat, but because of the thermal insulation which protects the camera's components, no heat can escape.
    Most Microbolometers in use, outside the fire service, are cooled with a cryogenic liquid. Uncooled units have heat sinks and fans. Not practical for our use. Face it, "change the battery packs and top off the liquid nitrogen" won't cut it.
    In a recent talk with some MSA Reps, I asked about the claim, Microbolometer technology is here and BST is on the way out. If this is the case, why is MSA developing the evolution 3000, a BST based unit?




    [This message has been edited by E229lt (edited November 01, 2000).]

  4. #4
    IRalltheway
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Exclamation

    The microbolometer is more sensitive to heat, therfore requires more thermal management. In your reference to topping off the liquid nitorgen, you are referring to a liquid cooled camera, which by the way is very old technology and would be very hard to come by and is unpractical for the fire service. I also agree that having to replace a module to keep the camera running when it gets hot to not a good idea. Their are several microbolometer TICs out there that handle the heat internally without removing a module to keep them cool. These cameras can often withstand more heat than a human. Therefore, work very well in the fire service. The reason the TICs outside the fire service are cooled with "coolers, fans, etc" is because weight in some cases is not that important and they don't need to be completly sealed to withstand the environment that the fire service will put it through. My guess is that MSA is producing the Evolution 3000 to be a low cost camera that depts can get inplace of the more expensive 4000. Again, the BST is proven and will be around for awhile. However, you lose the added features and the newest technology that the microbolometer provides. In some case the price is more important than what the camera offers. That would explain why the 4000 was released and available first.

  5. #5
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    NEXT

  6. #6
    FireOptic
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    E229LT:

    My name in Tom Clynne, and I am the President of Infrared Components Corporation (ICC). We are the developers of, and the manufacturers of the FireOpTIC, the original (and still the best in my opinion!) microbolometer TIC on the market. This camera has been on the market for over 2 years, and to date, we have consistently outperformed every other TIC on the market when it comes to "handling the heat", which seems to be your primary concern regarding MB based TICs.

    You might find it informative to review some "lively" chatter generated along these lines way back in February, 2000. Check out "Microbolometer or Not" originally started on February 21, 2000. If you can't see this in your topic list, go to "Preferences", "Default Topic View" and set it to "Show topics from last year" and click "Submit". You will likely have to scroll through several screens (look at the bottom and click a next page number) to find this topic.

    As a side note, ICC has an exclusive relationship with Draeger Safety in Pittsburgh, PA to be the sales, support and distribution partner for the FireOpTIC. It's still the same great camera, but now it has the full resources of Draeger Safety behind it, including a nationwide network of factory Fire Service Reps who we have trained to be "experts" in thermal imaging technology.

    Please review the above mentioned topic and see what you think.

    Thanks for keeping technology discussions in the forefront of this forum.

    ------------------
    Tom Clynne
    President - ICC

  7. #7
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Thanks Tom,
    But my concern is not so much handling heat from outside as dissapating heat generated from within the Microbolometer.

    Have looked at your FireOpTIC.

  8. #8
    Batchief41
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    MSA still wants to grab the BST dollars and right now not everyone can afford to get into Micro. Bottom line BST is going to save your tail just as good as Third Generation. Buy a Chevy or Buy a Cadilliac, both will get you from point A to point B.
    Originally posted by E229lt:
    IR, The problem with the uncooled Microbolometer is the heat it generates. Most manufacturers have placed 1, 2 or 3 heat sinks to counter some of this heat, but because of the thermal insulation which protects the camera's components, no heat can escape.
    Most Microbolometers in use, outside the fire service, are cooled with a cryogenic liquid. Uncooled units have heat sinks and fans. Not practical for our use. Face it, "change the battery packs and top off the liquid nitrogen" won't cut it.
    In a recent talk with some MSA Reps, I asked about the claim, Microbolometer technology is here and BST is on the way out. If this is the case, why is MSA developing the evolution 3000, a BST based unit?


    [This message has been edited by E229lt (edited November 01, 2000).]

  9. #9
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Here's a link pertaining to the Cantilever detector. Any thoughts out there?
    http://www.laurin.com/Content/Mar98/techCanti.html

  10. #10
    TIMan
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hello All,

    Very interesting topic and even better responses.

    Tom glad to see you are still checking the Forum, but next time please share some more of your knowledge.

    First, clear up some of the bad info here :
    Cooled Technology – cooled technology could be considered “old” because it has been around for over 30 years, but it is by no means “old” as in outdated. Actually there are still a number of cooled systems being made for Surveillance, Astronomy, Thermography, and Navigation. From a standpoint of sensitivity and certain other technical issues cooled systems are far superior to any uncooled system on the market. No they are not practical for Fire Service applications, but they are not outdated technology. Actually one of the first thermal detectors used in the Fire Service was a cooled unit called the “Probeye”. Want to find out more on cooled technology you can check out the following : www.flir.com www.sanders.com/iris/

    Microbolometers and Heat – not real sure where this came from, or what is going on, but a microbolometer detector itself does not generate any large quantity of heat. For an IR detector (BST or VOX Bolometer) to work the FPA (focal plane array) must be stabilized at a constant temperature. This temperature varies with detector technology, application, and manufacturer. Most of the uncooled FPAs used in the Fire Service are stabilized somewhere between 70-100 F. The FPA can heat up in a number of ways. The actual IR energy that the detector “sees”, and makes an image from, will heat the detector some. Heating will also come from additional components in the unit such as the power supply, display, and signal processors. Obviously, in Fire Service applications, heating will also come from the surrounding atmosphere. FPAs in uncooled units are thermally managed by a TEC (thermo-electric-cooler). A TEC uses the Peltier effect to heat or cool a FPA. This website has a good explanation of what goes on with a TEC : www.electracool.com/basics.htm
    A TEC is also linked to heat sink in most cases. I am not aware of any fans being used in Fire Service units. There is no question that heat will build inside of thermal imager, this goes for BST and Microbolometers. The real challenge in thermally managing an uncooled unit comes from the additional components inside the case and more significantly from the heat that makes it way into the case from the surrounding atmosphere, not from the heat the detector produces. Reality is most of the detector technologies are on a level playing field as far as thermal management goes, where there gets to be a real difference is how the technology is packaged. Heat must be keep out of the case, internal heating minimized, and an adequate TEC / Heat Sink designed for the heat that can not be eliminated or kept out. The people who package the detectors are as significant, as the people who are making the detectors.

    Future Technology – There are number of potential new thermal imaging technologies out there. Amorphous Silicon Based Bolometers, Thin Film Ferroelectric, and Cantilever Bolometers just to name few. Of course there are also some real significant issues here.

    When will it be ready ?
    Not many people know it but uncooled VOX bolometers have actually been around for almost 20 years now. Of course it has not been until the last couple of years that the technology has actually made it into the Fire Service. Likewise I don’t expect any of the newer technologies to make it into the Fire Service anytime real soon. We are talking at least 2-3 years before any new technology will be widespread, with the Amorphous Silicon Bolometers being the first technology most likely to make it. I also think you have to watch the technology that comes to the market quickly, because most likely it means it has had a very short debugging process. As they say, Don’t hold your breath !

    What are the real benefits of the new technology ?
    I love it how everyone wants the latest greatest, but is it really worth it ? People would argue that a Pentium III 300 is better than a Pentium II 300, it is faster and can handle more data. But if an average person used the 2 units they most likely could not tell you which was the Pentium II and which one was the Pentium III. Why, because the advantages are not always as significant as advertised and they actually are only realized in certain circumstances. It is true Microbolometers can do things a BST unit can not, but does that really make all that much difference, or are the features just a neat bell or whistle that is really not necessary. Manufacturers come out with new technology all the time, of course they don’t always do it because it is so much better, they do it so they will have a perceived advantage over the competition and so they can sell you something to replace your “old out dated technology”. When new technology can provide improved picture quality and sensitivity, I already have a number of units that have satisfactory picture quality and sensitivity, so is the gain really all that significant ? When new technology can provide a unit that weighs 2-3 pounds and costs $3-5,000, then we are talking.

    Do you want to be the guinea pig ?
    No question that manufactures will make an effort to debug any new product before it comes to market. However we all know that they are not always going to get everything and the first buyers are going to have to do some debugging of their own. Many people will buy a new model car because they want to be the first person on the block with it, many other people will wait a year so they can benefit from the debugging process of the first year buyers. How will you know a thermal imager is going work for you ? Because the manufacturer says so, or because a couple of hundred depts. have been using them without failure for the last year. Yes someone has to be first, and Yes no one should ever wait to buy a thermal imager. So what are you going to do ? For now there are a number of good choices available with solid track records, so I would stick with one of them (my personal opinion), and let some one else play guinea pig with the latest and greatest.

    I encourage everyone to check out everything that is available, under realistic conditions. But I would hope everyone will remember that it does not really matter what generation a unit is or what additional features it has. What really matters is that it will provide you with a good image, has a verifiable track record of working under almost any circumstance, is simple and practical in design, and is sold and serviced by a company with a verifiable track record. There are units out there that meet this criteria, so there is no need to wait for the latest and greatest. If something better comes along, nothing says a dept should have one thermal imager that they are going to use for the next 15 years.

    Please, if your going to buy something, buy it because it has proven it can do the job, not just because it is the supposedly the latest and greatest.

    Good Luck, Be Safe,
    “TIman”
    Bullard TI Training Specialist

    PS : Knowledge is priceless, the more you can learn on any subject the better. Keep up the great effort to learn all you can about what may ultimately be keeping you alive in your daily battles.


  11. #11
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Thanks for an informative post Mike. One more question for you:

    I recently spoke to a salesman for one of your distributors about a demo of your MX. He immediatly attempted to put the TI in my hands, not the MX. Any reason? Is there a problem? Are we clearing the shelves? Very curious.
    Also, a nearby Dept. currently has two TIs and has just ordered four more. They didn't opt for the MX. When buying several units like this it doesn't seem like the $3000.00 difference is the reason. When asked they responded, "we just wanted to get four more of the same". My gut tells me otherwise.

    Something's up with Microbolometer, I haven't found it yet, but I know it's out there.

  12. #12
    Klink
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Exclamation

    The microbolometer is now in my opinion a proven technology for the fire service. There are several TICs on the market that perform very well in high heat conditions and will out perform the BST cameras. However, the microbolometer requires a lot more thermal management and technology know how. You can't just throw the engine into a case and bam you have a great camera. Some of the manufs. are finding this out and have been having some problems. It also takes a lot of $$$ to develop a microbolometer camera, therefore the company will need to make a big committment, have the engineering know how, and plan on staying in the market for awhile. In my opinion over the next year or so you will see some of the companies that sell cameras now disappearing due to the market share and cost to sell TICs.

    Kurt

  13. #13
    TIMan
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hello All,

    First to answer the question on the MX,

    There are no problems with the MX as of now. Were there problems in the last couple of months? Yes. Even though we spent over 9 months debugging the unit we still had some issues crop up at the last minute. Bottom line, we were not going to put anything into the hands of a user until we were 100 percent confident that it was going to work. As of now we believe that the performance of the MX will match or exceed the performance of the original BST unit.


    Another Issue,
    Of course we have also had a lot of problems with customers because they want the unit yesterday, but we did not want to ship it if we had any doubts. From a sales standpoint if we had not shown the unit starting back at FDIC everyone would have been chasing a VIPER or Evolution 4000. It is this mentality that depts. must have what is perceived as the latest and greatest that is scaring me. Depts. are rushing out to buy microbolometers and the bottom line is they really have not had an outstanding track record so far. To sum it up :

    Bullard –basic introduction at FDIC, should have shipped in Summer, finally units are shipping now. Took over 9 months of serious work to get the bugs out of the system, but the MX is finally where it should be. Units are in the field and a number of saves have already been reported using the units. Supply is not currently meeting demand, but it should catch up very shortly

    Cairns – starting showing the Viper over a year ago. Started out using a Lockheed Martin microbolometer (all of the early promotional material and demo units were based on Lockheed Martin). Switched at some point to a DIOP microbolometer (this is what you are most likely seeing in the demo units now, though there still may be some Lockheed units out there). They have delivered some units but numbers are very low. I know of at least 1 dept. that received units but returned them due to dissatisfaction (I don’t have permission from the dept to use their name so I will leave it out for now, if you ask around you can find out who it was). I also believe Cairns has suspended shipment until the first of next year. Not sure if they are sticking with DIOP, going back to Lockheed Martin, or using both. It would be nice if a Cairns rep would clear up the Lockheed Martin / DIOP issue.

    FLIR – has had their hands free unit out for over a year. Comments have been all over the place. At least one person here will tell you it is the greatest thing since sliced bread. However at least 2 depts. have contacted us offering to trade their Fire FLIRs for Bullard units. FLIR has been advertising a new hand-held and hands-free unit for the last couple of months but they did not show them at the Chiefs show in Dallas. They also got into big trouble with financial reports a couple of months back. Not sure if it is that, or technology, that is holding up the new product releases. Greg, feel free to enlighten us.

    FRC – they have been showing their Lockheed Martin based microbolometer version of the Lifesight for over a year. Things have been very quiet on this one. I have not seen one in the field or heard of a department who has purchased one. This one is definitely a sleeper, if you have one please comment.

    MSA – have been showing their Lockheed Martin Microbolometer based Evolution 4000 for over 6 months, yet to the best of my knowledge no units have been delivered to an end user. I believe they are quoting a ship date of January 2001. Hard to comment until they actually make it into the field.

    ICC – saved a very interesting situation for last! Tom’s crew came out with the Fire OpTIC over 2 years ago. That is right, an uncooled VOX based microbolometer unit has actually been out on the market for as long as some of the BST based units. So why has the buzz on Microbolometers just taken off in the last year ? If Microbolometers are such cutting edge technology and the best thing going then why hasn’t everyone been buying Fire OpTICs for the last 2 years ? Tom can give us a better number, but I don’t think there are over 250 FireOpTICs out in the field. There are over 3500 BST based units out in the field. Seems like the majority of people have actually been happy with the BST technology, until some people came along with some marketing dollars and some big stories. Comments have also been all over the place on the ICC unit. Tom and company have done a good job with the technology, they just need to put it in something more friendlier than a stainless steel box. They said it : "Awsome but Ugly"

    No question the future of Fire Service Thermal Imaging will be based on something other than BST technology. But for now no one should be ruling it out just because it is not 3rd generation technology. The Microbolometers are coming along, but if you jump now, you better make sure you have something that is really going to work as well as the sales and marketing people claim it will. As always talk to each other ! Before you go out and order a Viper, or any other microbolometer based unit, talk to 10 departments who have used it in the field under realistic conditions. If they are not happy, or you can’t find at least 10 departments who have actually used the unit, you may want to rethink things. If the new technology works great ! If it doesn’t work, the guy with the “old” 2nd generation technology actually has a unit that is working satisfactorily, you don’t have anything ! BST units have saved many lives, and will continue to save lives, reguardless of what generation technology they are.

    Try it yourself, talk to others! Just make sure you don’t buy something on a technology sales pitch alone.

    Good Luck, Be Safe,
    “TIman”
    Bullard TI Training Specialist

    PS : One last thought and argument for buying a unit with a good track record. It has been well known for some time that certain manufacturers set their demo units up to function differently in an office and in a burn so they could have the best image quality under each different set of circumstances. Needless to say the unit you buy will not operate this way, so what you get in the demo, is not what you get when the real unit arrives. That is why checking with current users will make sure you are getting the information on the real thing, not some one of a kind sales tool.

    Kurt, it is a customary thing around here to let everyone know when you work for a TI manufacturer or distributor.

    [This message has been edited by TIMan (edited November 06, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by TIMan (edited November 06, 2000).]

  14. #14
    Klink
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Exclamation

    TIMAN, I have read your post for a very long time now and I always have enjoyed the way you put things. I apologize for not introducing myself because I assumed that since my info was in my profile that was good enough. Apparently not, so hello everyone my name is Kurt Klinkhammer and I work for FLIR Systems in the FireFLIR Division. I'm a District Sales Rep for the Western Region of the US.

    Kurt

  15. #15
    Rich F
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    TIMan - The MSA Evolution 4000 has been shipping since at least September,(yes I work for an MSA Dealer) we currently have many units in service here in CT and NY. I have only had 1 problem with a bad display and the turn around time was 24 hours.The response from depts. has been very favorable (ie. the Heat Seeker Color ID,large 5" display etc..) but I recommend to everyone to try the cameras in a live burn, together, if possible. I have made and lost sales where the only hands on the dept. did was at a conference table. So far the burns we have done the 4000 performed without a hiccup.
    Stay Safe.

  16. #16
    Klink
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Exclamation

    I wanted to answer TIMAN statements that he made in regards to FireFLIR on the above post. The FireFLIR without a doubt is the best hands free system ever made. Their is definately a place for hands free and handheld. I know of several depts that own several handheld units and have purchased several FireFLIRs. It all depends on what you want to do with the camera. In regards to the trading in of FireFLIRs. That's a funny statement because we have also been approached by several departments to take their handhelds and give them FireFLIRs and believe it or not one even had a Bullard. So, I guess what I'm saying is all the TICs are good systems. It just depends on what works best for you and your dept. In regards to our handheld it will be out very very soon. We unlike some other manuf want all bugs out before we advertise it. When you see it, it will be available. We are not going to advertise it now and tell you it will be out in July. As far as our hands free system. That system was at IAFC with the new features. We changed the optics, so they are now 55 degree instead of 33, we also changed some internal components to allow for better image quality and remote diagnostics/upgrade capability. The camera looks the same, so that might be why you didn't think it was at the show. As far as the financial reports statements goes. That is something that happens when you are public company. That has nothing to do with the release of the handheld . FLIR is still and will remain the worlds largest commerical infrared manuf.

    Kurt

    [This message has been edited by Klink (edited November 07, 2000).]

  17. #17
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    TI,
    A local Dept has the FRC and I will say this, it is, by far, the best image I have seen. The weight and ergonomics, on the other hand, may outweigh the image, in my opinion.
    I have seen just about every unit on the market. I have my own short list made, the final consideration is long term reliability. This is the toughest hurdle and will have to be 80% gut feeling. The long term has yet to come for any unit out there.

    I again thank you for your input.

  18. #18
    tonybelair
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Wink

    Fellow FireProfessional:
    What a great day for America. We have the honor of electing one of the two biggest bozos ever to grace the presidential ballot and have again allowed TIMan to overwhelm another forum with his anti Mircobolmeter rant.
    After reading his postings I have come to some conclusions.
    1) The Bullard unit still does not work and Bullard doesn't know how to get it to work, so they sent TIMan go out to blow smoke. I suggest Bullard invest in resources that understand the technology, and can support your manufacturing operations. Anybody can put parts together, but knowing they work requires skilled professionals. That is why firefighters both paid and volunteers train so hard. KNOW HOW; KNOW WHY
    2) If you understood heat management you would undstand why ICC selected the to use a nichol coated case (it is not Stainless). For your information file the design was selected to relect the heat and as an user for the past 18 months I can attest to the value of not having to leave an assignment, because a heat sink needed to be replaced. The design of this unit accounts for heat transfer (the chassis refelct up to 95% of radiant heat allowing it to run longer and cooler than others) and in the case of a overheat condition, you simply hit it with the hose and continue on with your mission. ( You don't go outside and stick it in ice as some camera seller suggest.)

    I proud of the camera my department selected and the world class service the ICC has provided.


    TONYBELAIR

    P.S. One additional fact you got wrong; the correct display of affection is "Ugly but Awsome" I run with the big dogs Sparky.

  19. #19
    FireTIC
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Holy Cow,
    Anyone want to place a bet on this battle? Everybody take a breather, then we can start again.

    Everyone,
    Do YOUR own evaluation on cameras, and dont buy until after you do your burn.

    IRalltheway,
    You really should post your affiliation, your remarks make you transparent.

    E229lt,
    Something to note: All Thermal Imagers create heat, But not significant heat. What is more of a problem to control is how to deal with external heat that is absorbed into the Thermal Imager. And they all absorb heat, even the reflective metal ones.
    Now what do you do with a camera that is above an operational temperature? Insulation?
    Cooling? Fan? Heat Sink? You make the decision, on what is best. The junk you HEAR is all a sales pitch (I dont believe in foam insulation, I've seen a foam seat cushion after a fire).

    Everyone,
    BST and Microbolometer cameras both work.

    TIMan,
    You disappoint me. But I would still like to give you an honorary diploma in the art of smoke screens and mirrors. Your theory of magic Thermal Imaging is amusing.

    Klink,
    I agree that Microbolometers are here to stay, but can they outperform BST? I believe that to be untrue in real world firefighting. Just this past weekend, at a burn, 2 totally different microbolometer cameras failed to function after being exposed to heat(approx 2 hrs). The BST camera worked for the entire 4 hour burn. Had the microbolometer actually worked, maybe this department would have bought them.

    In Conclusion,
    If you like it, Buy It. Ultimately you will have to live with it.

    FRD
    Nj,PA,NY ISG Dealer


  20. #20
    E229Lt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    FRD,
    Welcome to the thread!

    Now we have the "VIDEO OVERLAY"

    Tell me, is that a bell or a whistle?

    Are you possibly going to be in the Long Island area Sunday?

    [This message has been edited by E229lt (edited November 08, 2000).]

  21. #21
    FireTIC
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    E229lt,
    Sorry, I do not cover the L.I. area of New York, But I will send you an E-mail on who you can contact.

    To answer your question on video overlay: I have mixed reviews on this feature.
    Pros: with this feature you can read DOT labels and it can be helpful in identifying an object. Just seeing something thermally may not be good enough.

    Cons: It can not see through smoke, so it will only be heplful with some visibility.

    FRD
    NJ,PA,NY ISG dealer


  22. #22
    TIMan
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Couple of more comments for everyone involved,

    I made a comment a few months back that I was done posting on the Forum unless it was related to training. I said that because many of the posts were simply myself and couple of reps going back and forth and at times it was getting pretty ridiculous.

    However I did not get back into the topics on technology or evaluations because I was trying to pull a smoke and mirror routine for Bullard as many have suggested. I got back into it because I was trying to clear up some misconceptions. I hate to sit by while bad information is being posted here because many people come to this forum looking for information on thermal imaging, and if they simply go with what is posted bad decisions can end up being made off of bad information. As such I just tried to clear up the issues on uncooled technology and microbolometers heating up. I did not even comment on the MX until E229lt specifically asked.

    Of course once again we have the string of reps jumping in and everything I say is a Bullard sales pitch or of course I don’t have clue what I am talking about. In the past year I have had over 5 articles published on thermal imaging. I have conducted over 50 seminars and training sessions on various thermal imaging topics in 5 different countries. Between the Military and Fire Service I have over 15 years of experience. My resume is 3 pages of college education, fire service certifications, and thermal imaging certifications. I guess the publishers and agencies that allowed me to present the material did it for the heck of it. Funny how those accusations get made but really never get backed up. Also funny how the reps have a problem but rarely does a firefighter. I average about 5 emails a week from people who have checked into the forum and they aren’t complaints but request for further information or assistance.

    Of course one of the comments this time was from a firefighter so I will respond to that one. First let me say that I stand corrected on the ICC moto and the exact construction of units housing, I hope Tom will forgive me. As far as trying to run interference for Bullard or trying to sell the MX, no need. As I stated if you want to find out about the MX you don’t have to listen to me, just contact one of the departments who have been using the unit in the last couple of months. The save one of those departments made with a MX will be featured in our newsletter next month. Kind of hard to make a save with the unit if it’s not working ! As far as the ICC Thermodynamics 101 issue goes, nice try but something kind of got left out. The discussion on a shiny surface reflecting radiant heat was very true. However no discussion was made on heat transfer in the form of conduction or convection. A shiny metal surface will reflect radiate heat, but it will also do an excellent job of conducting ambient or convected heat. If you think about it the crash / rescue guys wear aluminized (shiny surface) gear because they face a lot of radiant heat, but we don’t were aluminized gear in structural firefighting because our main heat exposure comes from convected heat. Of course as was noted when the metal case starts to heat up from the ambient heat conditions you can hit it with a hose and cool it back down, nice job on the water resistance. Just for the record Big Dog, Bullard has been talking to ICC for a number of years and I always talk to Tom at the trade shows so we are pretty familiar with what is going on. To bad we did not work something out and ICC decided to go with Dragger, at least me and Tom can brush up on our German now when we run into each other. As I have said before, ICC actually has a nice unit, so settle back down Big Dog no need to bark in this direction on ICC.

    I will continue to post information here, but not because I am trying to sell Bullard. I will post info because it is way past time for the garbage that accumulates on daily basis to go away. If you have any doubts I will leave you with some of the more classics examples and you can make your own decisions.

    For over 6 months ISG advertised a microbolometer based Helmet Mounted unit (K-100) which was supposed to be out sometime last year. Many departments waited for months, but to this date nothing has appeared. I know of at least 3 departments who had saves within 60 days of receiving their units, what if they had waited?

    I personally heard many an ISI and MSA rep say, you can’t see those large LCD displays in heavy smoke conditions. Funny how the new units from both of them have a large LCD display. Even funnier that one ISI unit is being advertised for heavy smoke conditions and the other for 2 man teams. I guess you are supposed to carry both of them on the rig and take the appropriate one in based on smoke conditions.

    The US Navy test was a very hot topic of debate, check out some of the older posts. Anyone want to guess which unit the Navy decided to buy ? They actually ended up qualifying 3 units but they have not actually made a Navy wide purchase as of yet.

    Many manufacturers have advertised and told firefighters for the past 2 years that the temperature measurement features on their units are accurate to +/- 1 degree Fahrenheit. You still can actually find this in some of the literature out there. They actually have gotten away with it because most firefighters lack training in thermography or non-contact temperature measurement. Of course when the discussion came up on the forum and the science and truth of what really was going on came to light, many reps were all of sudden back peddling. How many firefighters could have, or did, make a life threatening decision based on number that was inaccurate ?

    I could fill another 20 pages with the crap that has been passed off over the last 2 years as fact. This is the stuff that we all need to work together to get rid of. We all will not necessarily agree here on which unit or technology is best and that is OK. But we all need to make sure that we clearly identify what is a personal preference or opinion versus what is a cold hard scientific fact. I hate to say it but I know if things continue the way they are, it is only a matter of time before a firefighter goes down because they were operating on bad information. We should all be in this to put thermal imagers in service so we can save lives, not make a dollar.

    Good Luck, Be Safe,
    “TIman”
    Bullard TI Training Specialist

  23. #23
    TIMan
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Couple of more comments for everyone involved,

    I made a comment a few months back that I was done posting on the Forum unless it was related to training. I said that because many of the posts were simply myself and couple of reps going back and forth and at times it was getting pretty ridiculous.

    However I did not get back into the topics on technology or evaluations because I was trying to pull a smoke and mirror routine for Bullard as many have suggested. I got back into it because I was trying to clear up some misconceptions. I hate to sit by while bad information is being posted here because many people come to this forum looking for information on thermal imaging, and if they simply go with what is posted bad decisions can end up being made off of bad information. As such I just tried to clear up the issues on uncooled technology and microbolometers heating up. I did not even comment on the MX until E229lt specifically asked.

    Of course once again we have the string of reps jumping in and everything I say is a Bullard sales pitch or of course I don’t have clue what I am talking about. In the past year I have had over 5 articles published on thermal imaging. I have conducted over 50 seminars and training sessions on various thermal imaging topics in 5 different countries. Between the Military and Fire Service I have over 15 years of experience. My resume is 3 pages of college education, fire service certifications, and thermal imaging certifications. I guess the publishers and agencies that allowed me to present the material did it for the heck of it. Funny how those accusations get made but really never get backed up. Also funny how the reps have a problem but rarely does a firefighter. I average about 5 emails a week from people who have checked into the forum and they aren’t complaints but request for further information or assistance.

    Of course one of the comments this time was from a firefighter so I will respond to that one. First let me say that I stand corrected on the ICC moto and the exact construction of units housing, I hope Tom will forgive me. As far as trying to run interference for Bullard or trying to sell the MX, no need. As I stated if you want to find out about the MX you don’t have to listen to me, just contact one of the departments who have been using the unit in the last couple of months. The save one of those departments made with a MX will be featured in our newsletter next month. Kind of hard to make a save with the unit if it’s not working ! As far as the ICC Thermodynamics 101 issue goes, nice try but something kind of got left out. The discussion on a shiny surface reflecting radiant heat was very true. However no discussion was made on heat transfer in the form of conduction or convection. A shiny metal surface will reflect radiate heat, but it will also do an excellent job of conducting ambient or convected heat. If you think about it the crash / rescue guys wear aluminized (shiny surface) gear because they face a lot of radiant heat, but we don’t were aluminized gear in structural firefighting because our main heat exposure comes from convected heat. Of course as was noted when the metal case starts to heat up from the ambient heat conditions you can hit it with a hose and cool it back down, nice job on the water resistance. Just for the record Big Dog, Bullard has been talking to ICC for a number of years and I always talk to Tom at the trade shows so we are pretty familiar with what is going on. To bad we did not work something out and ICC decided to go with Dragger, at least me and Tom can brush up on our German now when we run into each other. As I have said before, ICC actually has a nice unit, so settle back down Big Dog no need to bark in this direction on ICC.

    I will continue to post information here, but not because I am trying to sell Bullard. I will post info because it is way past time for the garbage that accumulates on daily basis to go away. If you have any doubts I will leave you with some of the more classics examples and you can make your own decisions.

    For over 6 months ISG advertised a microbolometer based Helmet Mounted unit (K-100) which was supposed to be out sometime last year. Many departments waited for months, but to this date nothing has appeared. I know of at least 3 departments who had saves within 60 days of receiving their units, what if they had waited?

    I personally heard many an ISI and MSA rep say, you can’t see those large LCD displays in heavy smoke conditions. Funny how the new units from both of them have a large LCD display. Even funnier that one ISI unit is being advertised for heavy smoke conditions and the other for 2 man teams. I guess you are supposed to carry both of them on the rig and take the appropriate one in based on smoke conditions.

    The US Navy test was a very hot topic of debate, check out some of the older posts. Anyone want to guess which unit the Navy decided to buy ? They actually ended up qualifying 3 units but they have not actually made a Navy wide purchase as of yet.

    Many manufacturers have advertised and told firefighters for the past 2 years that the temperature measurement features on their units are accurate to +/- 1 degree Fahrenheit. You still can actually find this in some of the literature out there. They actually have gotten away with it because most firefighters lack training in thermography or non-contact temperature measurement. Of course when the discussion came up on the forum and the science and truth of what really was going on came to light, many reps were all of sudden back peddling. How many firefighters could have, or did, make a life threatening decision based on number that was inaccurate ?

    I could fill another 20 pages with the crap that has been passed off over the last 2 years as fact. This is the stuff that we all need to work together to get rid of. We all will not necessarily agree here on which unit or technology is best and that is OK. But we all need to make sure that we clearly identify what is a personal preference or opinion versus what is a cold hard scientific fact. I hate to say it but I know if things continue the way they are, it is only a matter of time before a firefighter goes down because they were operating on bad information. We should all be in this to put thermal imagers in service so we can save lives, not make a dollar.

    Good Luck, Be Safe,
    “TIman”
    Bullard TI Training Specialist

  24. #24
    William V. Quintana
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    BST does not lend itself to the use of wearable computing systems which will be required for Real-Time Locating Systems to become a reality. Such a device (the "WFFE")has just been patented and is in fact micro-b based for that reason. Just as air consumption is an issue, so will be power consumption. Lastly, ergonmics will drive everything in the "WFFE", and micro-b is more ergonomically adaptable.

  25. #25
    fireman_387
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    alright, curiosity getting the cat here. william devulge more on your response (i.e., information, websites)

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