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Furnaces are an obvious infrared subject since they are a source of a lot of thermal energy. External scans of refractory and piping, doors, and internal furnace tube surveys are all common infrared applications.

For external surveys, a wide angle lens is often useful for the close views of the skin from the narrow decking. A telephoto lens is useful for images taken from grade or adjoining furnaces.

For internal surveys, the right type of camera, filters, and lenses are essential. A solid, repeatable process for collecting the data, including target parameters, is absolutely necessary for reliable temperature data. Remember, there are good reasons why facilities want to know an exact tube surface temperature, and any estimations you make in emissivity or other parametes will result in a greater overall margin of error.

Safety is also very important when working with furnaces. Follow site safety procedures for working around open furnace doors and use the buddy system. Watch for tripping hazards on decking, and make sure you don’t still have your infrared camera in your hand when you climb ladders.