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Home Security Surveillance: Keep Watch Day Or Night With Infrared Security Cameras

By Jeffrey Parker

Since their inception for use by the U.S. military in the forests of Korea, infrared cameras have been put to use in any number of industries – from medicine to geological surveys. They’ve also grown into a pivotal tool in home security surveillance, rendering security systems complete in a way never before thought possible.

People these days often don’t fully understand the difference between “night vision” security cameras and infrared technology. Night vision cameras predate infrared – in fact, night vision goggles, which use an array of lenses to intensify light up to half a dozen times what the human eye could perceive, were already in use during World War II. More modern variants use CCD lenses sensitized to light at Wavelengths invisible to the human eye. Such cameras incorporate a torch that shines light at that wavelength, effectively illuminating the scene for the camera while it appears unchanged, even pitch black, to human eyes.

Both these designs are known for producing images of inferior quality. Much of the time, the resultant footage is monochromatic, fuzzy and about as clear as the imagery you’d expect from a video game console in the 1980s.

Infrared security cameras, on the other hand, use microbolometers to detect the heat (scientifically known as black body radiation) of objects regardless of lighting conditions, as the light they detect is at a wavelength significantly longer than anything the human eye can perceive. They can pick up detailed, high-resolution images in the complete absence of illumination. While an infrared security camera might not be able to pick up superficial things such as the color of a person’s skin or hair, it will help you to establish things like the build and gender of the intruder, as well as where they’re likely to have left fingerprints. Since infrared wireless surveillance cameras are now available, your quest for state-of-the-art home security surveillance won’t for you to face up to the complications of hard wiring your house. Indeed, wireless surveillance cameras allow you, if you so wish, to send footage directly to an online storage cluster, making your home security surveillance system completely tamper proof.

Thus you’ll no doubt agree that wireless security cameras in general and infrared security cameras in particular can be a truly invaluable addition to any home security surveillance system. This is doubly the case for those living in homes with poor external lighting.

Your main considerations when it comes to the question of whether or not to purchase one or multiple infrared security cameras will be twofold. The first question is: do you need them? In areas with good on-street-lighting, most areas outside of the house will be more suitable for a standard wireless surveillance camera. Furthermore, if you have (or take the trouble to install) motion-activated lighting around the house, the external infrared security cameras will really be quite redundant. Remember, great as they are, these can be very pricey toys. FLIR, the top producer of infrared security cameras, still prices its low-end models at no less than $2000 a piece.

One truly wonderful thing about infrared security cameras is that, due to their ability to detect temperature changes, they not only beef up your home security surveillance system, but also completely eliminate the need for smoke detectors. You can simply have your cameras set up so as signal the fire department when the cameras detect that ambient temperature has gone over a certain level. This is something you should factor into your reasoning when debating the affordability of the technology.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Parker, Jeffrey "Home Security Surveillance: Keep Watch Day Or Night With Infrared Security Cameras." Home Security Surveillance: Keep Watch Day Or Night With Infrared Security Cameras. 2 Jul. 2010. 26 Jul 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Parker, J (2010, July 2). Home Security Surveillance: Keep Watch Day Or Night With Infrared Security Cameras. Retrieved July 26, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Parker, Jeffrey "Home Security Surveillance: Keep Watch Day Or Night With Infrared Security Cameras"

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