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Thermal imaging can reduce fire risk

Supplier: FLIR Systems Australia
23 August, 2012

When buildings burn and people die, the inevitable questions come thick and fast. How did this happen? What caused this? And the big one: how can we prevent this from happening again?

More often than not it's the insurance underwriters who are probing the cause of the blaze and asking the questions, looking for any maintenance negligence or ways it could have been avoided in the first place.

Meanwhile, as a preventative measure, more and more business owners are required to provide thermal switchboard survey reports to insurance companies as part of their commercial premises fire risk assessment.

Thermal survey switchboard reports have become a valuable business document that can lower insurance premiums and help businesses save money.

Faults that can be detected with a thermal imaging camera are indicated by elevated heat coming from the problem area.  The causes of these faults range from a loose connection on a circuit breaker, an over current problem on a circuit or simply a loose screw - normally faults undetected by the naked eye.

FLIR thermal imaging cameras are at the forefront of switchboard surveys:

  • FLIR thermal imaging cameras allow inspectors to see hot spots
  • Hot spots are generally traced to a high resistance connection with multiple causes of failure
  • Detecting hot spots allows people to see faults before they become a problem
  • Predictive maintenance reports involve taking an IR image accompanied by a visual image
  • Electrical systems report for the customer and insurance companies
  • Repairs can be scheduled to fix potential problems before they become costly failures (fires etc)

The commercial sector is valuing the use of the infrared technology as it calculates the cost savings associated with reduced breakdown maintenance and lost production downtime.

The use of thermal imaging identifies faults at an early stage, enabling remedial work to be planned around business operations.

Also as faults are found early, the cost of remedial works is far less than if left to the point where equipment fails.

Thermal imaging surveys include both infrared and visual images to provide those without electrical knowledge, a better understanding of the problem and its implications.

The annual switchboard and electrical distribution system thermography surveys are giving facility managers a vastly improved picture of the condition of their assets leading to better asset-related business decisions.

And as thermography surveys can be completed with no interruption to business operations, it presents as a very valuable and cost effective package to many businesses;

It's a similar story in domestic situations. If you've noticed your power dropping out, electrical appliances not working or the household lighting playing up it could be a fault in your switchboard which can easily be identified by a thermal imaging survey.

FLIR Cameras

FLIR Systems is the world leader in infrared cameras, having the widest range and offering the highest standard of any supplier for predictive and preventative maintenance.

The FLIR range includes:

  • The low cost, powerful little revolutionary FLIR i3, producing snapshots of temperature differences equal to 3,600 readouts from a single spotmeter with the i5 and i7 producing even more.
  • The ground-breaking FLIR E-Series extends performance and affordability with features like Bluetooth® and industry-first Wi-Fi connectivity, 3.5" touchscreen and iPhone/iPad App. Add to this MeterLink, the pioneering wireless connection from FLIR that connects your infrared camera with your ClampMeter.
  • The FLIR T-Series also has MeterLink and offers an optimum mix of ergonomics and flexibility. The T-Series takes the quality of image to a whole new level and has a long list of impressive features, including Bluetooth®, Wi-Fi connectivity, 4.3" touchscreen, iPhone/iPad App and some models with the stunning MSX feature.
  • The A-Series, which can be installed almost anywhere to monitor critical equipment and automation systems.
  • FLIR's GF-Series optical gas detection cameras let you find gases such as hydrocarbon, natural gas CO emissions, refrigerants and SF6 leaks quickly, accurately and safely without shutting systems down for inspection.
  • The new FLIR IR Windows offer a safer and more efficient way of carrying out electrical infrared inspections of live components and reducing the vast majority of arc flash triggers
  • A variety of software packages turning tools into solutions. All users of FLIR's thermal imaging camera systems can work more efficiently and productively by utilising the most professional camera-software combinations.