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The Covid-19 virus outbreak has put a tremendous strain on national resources and sparked a rush to invent and implement newer technology while also adapting current ones. With sales of thermal/infrared imaging cameras sharply rising, the usage of thermal imaging has received special attention.


Wuhan, China, the original epicenter of the crisis, employed drones with infrared cameras to track activity. These days, a number of portable thermal imaging equipment are being emphasized for their ability to safeguard important personnel. Although they all have somewhat varied functionalities and application models, they all ultimately try to measure body temperature and identify potential viral sufferers using the resulting measurement.


According to this week's The Telegraph report, the demand for infrared cameras from US company Flir, a thermal imaging technology expert, has increased by a startling 700%. According to the business, their cameras are able to "detect changes in skin temperature as slight as 0.01 degrees Celsius."


A new automated system that uses "thermal cameras for accurate, non-contact skin temperature measurement, looking for abnormalities that may suggest a fever and underlying infection" has also just been released by Bytronic Automation. Stewart Jackson, the company's technical sales manager, did point out that users must employ a "black body"—a "very accurate temperature emitter that must be visible to the camera—as well as the area around the tear ducts”—in order to achieve an accuracy of 0.3 degrees centigrade.


The company adds that while useful in identifying high body temperatures, it wouldn't particularly detect coronavirus – just symptoms, and that this type of technology wouldn't be precise in differentiating between groups of people.


NBC News reports that a "fever detection system" produced by the Texas company Athena Security had received 1,000 orders in just two weeks. For real-time results, the device links seamlessly to an already-installed security camera system.


Can Thermal Imaging Take the Heat out of the Coronavirus Crisis