Tuesday, May 31, 2011

FLIR infrared cameras now priced below $900 for educational use!

Updates: December 15, 2015

More than four years have passed. Just as I predicted, the price of IR cameras has continued to drop. FLIR and SEEK Thermal have released several IR cameras (FLIR C2, FLIR ONE, FLIR TG165, SEEK, etc.) with the lowest price now under $200.

I just got a quote from a FLIR sale representative that they now offer 25% educational discount for their products. This means for an I3 camera that is listed as $1,195, the educational price is now $896.25. For an I5 camera, the educational price is now $1196.25.

These prices may be even lower if a school purchases ten cameras, or perhaps through a Groupon deal? :-) Given the power of IR imaging, it seems to me that IR cameras now have higher cost effectiveness compared with sensors, which cost $50-100 each (already discounted prices from major vendors such as Vernier and Pasco). Note that an I3 camera can be considered as 3,600 temperature sensors bundled in just one camera. And the measurement is reduced to a camera shot, saving all the work needed to connect the dots and color-map them.

The educational potential of IR imaging stems from two aspects: First, its usefulness has been demonstrated by many commercial applications. Second, it is a tool that greatly literates students from laborious, tedious data acquisition work and allows them to focus on science concepts.

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