How Can You Boost FLIR Night Vision Visibility?

Night vision has come a long way since its initial use by military forces. Today, FLIR and night vision technology have diverse uses, and commercial night vision technology is becoming increasingly affordable. If you’re looking to boost your night vision system’s image quality, this article will explain how using a dedicated illuminator can help you do just that.

What is FLIR?

FLIR stands for forward-looking infrared. It’s a type of infrared sensor that thermographic cameras use, and it’s commonly found in several law enforcement applications, such as traffic cameras, search and rescue operations, and some license plate capture systems. Other applications include military and civilian aircraft use for tracking and target acquisition, wildlife surveillance, and firefighting operations to improve visibility through haze and smoke.

Note that FLIR cameras differ from strictly night vision cameras because they do not require an active illumination source. FLIR cameras sense thermal infrared radiation, even in complete darkness.

How An Illuminator Can Boost FLIR Night Vision

FLIR cameras are normally quite expensive when used in high-resolution, high-framerate applications for military and law enforcement use. They can require bulky cooling solutions that are costly to run. Uncooled infrared sensors provide a less expensive alternative but have lower resolution and image quality.

A more affordable alternative is a conventional night vision camera. The upside is that night vision camera have much higher image quality and resolution. The caveat, however, is that night vision cameras often require active illumination to be able to resolve an image.

Adding an IR illuminator to your night vision camera can make extreme difference in invisibility. Night vision illuminators provide high levels of infrared light, allowing imaging under low light conditions.

Many common night vision applications, such as automobile driving aids, use dedicated illuminators to improve image quality. If you’re looking for a boost to your night vision system, a dedicated infrared illuminator will make a world of difference.

The benefits don’t just stop at improved image quality. Modern infrared illuminators are inexpensive and durable, using LED technology to emit a large amount of light. As a result, they’re also power-efficient and can be used in portable applications such as gun sights and night vision goggles. High-quality illuminators are also waterproof and resistant to fluctuations in temperature. This makes them ideal for use in demanding conditions outdoors.

Surveillance applications can benefit from the non-intrusive nature of an infrared illuminator, and you can easily fit license plate capture systems with one. Due to their low power usage, they can easily wire up to an automotive electrical system; no significant demands on the battery and alternator.


Iluminar makes custom, dedicated infrared and visible light illuminators for surveillance and license plate capture applications. Our products feature 850nm or 940nm semi-covert or covert wavelength options, as well as bright, white light. In addition, they’re waterproof, offer PoE power and AC/DC options, and feature pressure relief valves for rugged outdoor use. To upgrade your illumination setup, call us at (281) 438-3500, and our experts will be able to help you with any inquiry.

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