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Ask a sUAS Thermographer

Gord955

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Hello, I have a small Home Inspection business, my UAV has been invaluable for roof inspections and property photography, I want to add thermal imaging to my business, as you know it's very expensive, I have been looking at the Parrot Bebop Pro Thermal with the Flir One Pro camera, it has a 160X120 resolution which is ok for what I'm doing. There are a couple of big advantages, one, you can take both thermal and HD images in one flight, the other is the Flir One Pro can be detached and used with a smartphone for interior imaging. The idea of taking a thermal pic of the entire roof area has some value for energy loss evaluation etc.

The Parrot package is only 1500us vs other quotes anywhere from 5k to 20k
 

Outta Control

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Hello, I have a small Home Inspection business, my UAV has been invaluable for roof inspections and property photography, I want to add thermal imaging to my business, as you know it's very expensive, I have been looking at the Parrot Bebop Pro Thermal with the Flir One Pro camera, it has a 160X120 resolution which is ok for what I'm doing. There are a couple of big advantages, one, you can take both thermal and HD images in one flight, the other is the Flir One Pro can be detached and used with a smartphone for interior imaging. The idea of taking a thermal pic of the entire roof area has some value for energy loss evaluation etc.

The Parrot package is only 1500us vs other quotes anywhere from 5k to 20k

Hi Gord,

Since I was not familiar with the Parrot/FLIR combo, I had to do some quick research. After watching the video the Parrot offers it is not bad of a solution. My only concerns is that the FLIR is not mounted on a 2-axis gimbal. This is important for any inspection work. Even for SAR operation I personally do not think this is there yet. I do like the idea of the ability to remove the FLIR One for more mobile use. So let me go back to the inspection work. Much like when you are taking a picture with your cell phone you have to hold the camera steady to get a focused and clear picture. This becomes more apparent on a thermal picture. The shakier the camera can capture the image, the higher likelihood the image will encounter what is known as a "thermal smear", which then results in a blurry, out of focused image for your reporting.

I am not sure what aircraft you are currently using but here is my recommendation for about the same amount of money. I would recommend looking of an older DJI Phantom, not the 2 or 3, but an old Phantom that has the mounting holes for a GoPro gimbal. You can probably find these on CL for cheap. Then get yourself a FLIR Duo (non-Radiometric) and a GoPro 2-axis Gimbal. This would be a better solution for what you are doing.

Found this photo on the internet to give you an idea of what I an talking about. One note is this person connected a ImmersionRC video transmitter to be able to view images from the FLIR.

 
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rolling56

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off topic:
When i first saw the word "thermography" i thought of printing. Why? i ran a printing press for many years and thermography is when you print raised lettering on business cards etc. with powder and heat.
Anyway i learned another meaning to the word thermography today :)
 

Outta Control

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off topic:
When i first saw the word "thermography" i thought of printing. Why? i ran a printing press for many years and thermography is when you print raised lettering on business cards etc. with powder and heat.
Anyway i learned another meaning to the word thermography today :)

LOL Good to know but I think the proper verbiage for the printing industry is "Thermographic Prinitng".

Thermographic printing refers to two types of printing, both of which rely on heat to create the letters or images on a sheet of paper. The simplest type is where the paper has been coated with a material that changes colour on heating.

:)
 

Gord955

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Thanks a lot, that is great advice, I started out with a Yuneec Q500 which has paid for itself many times over, I've spent the last year getting Certified which I'm now able to take my aerial inspection to a new level. Countless hours of research on what to upgrade my equipment too, it's a daunting task. The Flir Duo I did look at, it would do what I need for sure. I wonder if I could get a gimbal to work with my Q500?
 

Outta Control

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@Outta Control

Thanks for that idea. My first dji model was the P1 and I still have it. You feel the Duo is a decent setup for general building (primarily residential) inspection?


Absolutely. Especially with budget in mind. It is a great stepping stone to earn and learn. Once you advance and learn how to interpret the data you can step it up to higher end models.

One piece of advice: A camera doesn't make good pictures, it is the person behind the lens does.
 
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rolling56

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LOL Good to know but I think the proper verbiage for the printing industry is "Thermographic Prinitng".

Thermographic printing refers to two types of printing, both of which rely on heat to create the letters or images on a sheet of paper. The simplest type is where the paper has been coated with a material that changes colour on heating.

:)
ya i read that also but i believe the actual "act" is thermography.
That article does not mention the anything about what i am talking about. This is about the closest i can find at this time:
Thermography or thermographic printing is a printing process that causes text or graphics to be slightly raised from the substrate. The resulting visual effect is interesting, making this a technique that is commonly used on wedding invitations, letterheads, business cards, greetings cards, gift wrap, diplomas and packaging.

Taken from this web page > Thermography | Thermographic printing as a print process
 
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Outta Control

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ya i read that also but i believe the actual "act" is thermography.
That article does not mention the anything about what i am talking about. This is about the closest i can find at this time:
Thermography or thermographic printing is a printing process that causes text or graphics to be slightly raised from the substrate. The resulting visual effect is interesting, making this a technique that is commonly used on wedding invitations, letterheads, business cards, greetings cards, gift wrap, diplomas and packaging.


Well I guess Thermography now has 3 meanings:

1: Printing Industry
2: Commercial Industry
3: Medical Industry

:)
 
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Outta Control

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For units that are 640x512 has no real benefit for a qualitative report or SAR and if one did get a 640 it is best to get the Radiometric version. Plus anyone who claims a metered temperature from say a DJI XT Radiometric camera, unless they are a certified sUAS Thermographer are providing an inaccurate information based on not understanding the external challenges of meter reading.

Finally, based on FLIR's reporting from other sUAS Thermographers, most clients (approx 90%) require no temperature reporting. There are only very specific clients would request it.

If you want something more robust than a FLIR Duo, then get the FLIR Vue Pro 336 30hz.

You would have been surprise at all my classmates that bought the high end unit just to learn they really did not need Radiometrics.
 
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