How does a IR thermometer work?

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Offline mcjhn

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How does a IR thermometer work?
« on: 30/06/2011 12:55:03 »
was just wondering...

Do IR thermometers measure the temperature of an object via the intensity or wavelengths of emitted light?

I've heard that you can measure the temperature of clouds with them, why doesn't the IR light emitted by the air in between the cloud and the detector confuse it?

[**I've heard this can damage them] What happens you point one at the sun? or an old fashioned light bulb? (is it not sensitive to visible black body radiation)?

(hopefull those make sense) thanks!

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Offline alberteinsteinx9

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How does a IR thermometer work?
« Reply #1 on: 02/07/2011 16:13:47 »
they measure the amount of IR energy entering the lens.  Everything above absolute zero emits black body radiation.

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Offline Mr. Data

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How does a IR thermometer work?
« Reply #2 on: 02/07/2011 16:15:57 »
they measure the amount of IR energy entering the lens.  Everything above absolute zero emits black body radiation.

Well, nothing exists below the zero-point temperatures, or at it exactly for that matter :P