Tic: Thermal Immaging Camera – Сustom Literature essay

Sample essay topic, essay writing: Tic: Thermal Immaging Camera - 885 words

TIC: THERMAL IMAGING CAMERA In the mid-1980's, the thermal imaging camera (TIC) was introduced into the firefighting market as another tool to aide in their ability to save lives, including their fellow firefighters. However, since its introduction there have been numerous discussions whether or not the TIC has a place in the firefighter's arsenal of tools. It is claimed that the TIC is '..one of the most spectacular applications of technology introduced into the fire service since the steam engine..' (http://www. avadtech. com). The problem with such a hi-tech tool is that it has limitations and training requirements. Some of the recommended applications of the TIC are: search & rescue, size-up, fire attack, overhaul and even hazardous-materials operations.

For example, the TIC detects heat and is not affected by smoke, therefore giving the firefighter a unique advantage of finding a body, and a way out of a smoke-filled environment. One common theme through all the applications listed is the need for training. To enhance and streamline the training, the TIC can be equipped with a video transmission system. The desired characteristics of a telemetry system might include the ability to maintain a picture throughout the training session. For example, recording a training session in a burn building can instruct cadets not only on the use of the TIC, but also in the techniques of fighting a fire - provided the picture is maintained at a distance away from the burn building

Along the same lines, a fixed camera with pan-tilt-zoom capability can be placed inside a burn building during a training session and can be controlled from a remote location. From an application standpoint, the telemetry system might include the ability to operate multiple cameras in a single scene. For example, in the case of a search & rescue, there could be multiple camera-men looking for victims. In this case, the command center can keep track of individuals inside by seeing the same image in the telemetry system as the firefighter sees in his camera. In other applications, the telemetry system might be required to be secure.

In other words, there are situations where the transmitted information should only be received by the intended party and not be picked up by a local television crew or other unintended users. Another application of the telemetry system is on ladder trucks. Typically, a ladder truck that has a hose attachement is used to spray water from the roof. The problem is that the water is sprayed without knowing exactly where the water is going. Consider a situation where a TIC on a pan-tilt-zoom control can be placed on the end of a ladder.

At the bottom of the ladder, the firefighter will then be able to see where the water from the hose is being sprayed and be able to control the water stream. K&A Wireless, LLC has developed the first four-channel, digital video transmission system for the firefighting market (www. ka-wireless. com/app). The VTRAN-2500 uses state-of-the-art digital spread spectrum technology as its core. The spread spectrum technology has a built-in coding sequence that provides for a low-probabilty of intercept. This reduces the ability of unwanted parties of receiving and decoding the signal.

In addition, the VTRAN-2500 provides better tracking when the transmitter is mobile. In other words, the picture is maintained even when the transmitter is in motion. In many cases, the high-tech solution is not for everyone. There are many analog (FM) systems still available in the market in both two-channel and four-channel varieties. These systems work well in some cases and may even be acceptable.

They are currently more cost effective than the digital systems and even require less power to run. However, analog systems do have many limitations. The first limitation is that in order to operate a Part 90 transmitter, there is a licensing requirement that exists from the FCC. Secondarily, from a performance standpoint, a digital system is far superior than a comparable analog system. Finally, the analog does not provide as secure a communication as the digital, therefore the choice of the technology should be dictated by the specific application. K&A Wireless also offers a lower cost analog (FM) Part 90 telemetry system (www. ka-wireless. com/app).

The VBLAST-2400 operates at 2.4 GHz and has an allowable output power of 750 mW. To enhance the utility, K&A provides a means of scambling the video such that it can provide a low-level security feature. This security feature, although not as robust as coding in the digital domain, does offer a means of securing the transmission of the video images. K&A Wireless has focused on providing a complete solution by offering the DTRAN-900 as well. The DTRAN-900 is a low-data rate wireless transmission system that can be used for pan-tilt-zoom applications.

Operating at 900 MHz, the DTRAN-900 can be incorporated with either the VTRAN-2500 or the VBLAST-2400 to provide a complete telemetry system that includes controlling a TIC or any other surveillance camera. Since there is no cost-effective system that will always work in every environment, optimzation is the key. Optimization in wireless communications comes in the form of identifying the right tool for the right job. K&A offers a variety of technology and subsystems that can be integrated to become a viable solution to the application at hand.

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