DIY Project Turns Flashlight into Thermal Imaging Tool

By Jason Fitzpatrick on January 3rd, 2013

The problem with thermal cameras is that even the low end ones can cost over $10,000. This clever DIY hack, however, makes it easy to create detailed thermal photographs with your digital camera and some inexpensive parts.

Courtesy of Max Justicz, we’re treated to a really novel solution to a very expensive problem. Max wanted to take high resolution thermal photographs but he didn’t have the pile of cash you’d need to purchase a high-resolution thermal camera. His solution was to use a camera he already had and build a flashlight that displayed the readout of a cheap thermal sensor via color LEDs. To thermal image the room above, for example, all he had to do was dim the lights, set the camera for a long exposure, and walk around shining his temperature-as-color flashlight along the walls.

Light Painting with Temperature [via Hack A Day]

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 01/3/13
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