Infrared, sometimes also known as infrared radiation, is radiant electromagnetic radiation with short wavelengths much shorter than those of visible light, which is why it is invisible to the naked eye. However, it is also very warm, with temperatures as high as 2K (nearly 2 million degrees Fahrenheit) at the hottest. Because of this, many industrial processes involving burning, freezing, and grilling can be enhanced by using infrasonic heaters. Infrared light is also commonly known to encompass wavelengths in the visual spectrum from the ultraviolet red end of the visible spectrum to nearly 1.3 millimeters, to about half a millionths of a wavelength. This is one reason why many industrial devices, such as television sets, cars, and even some medical equipment, utilize infrared technology.
Infrared is thought to be useful in that it can help reduce the spread of many types of cancer. The infrared waves are thought to have holes in the middle, much like a “cavity.” This provides a means for damaging cancer cells without killing healthy tissue. In addition, the wavelengths are thought to have holes in them similar to those found in plant cells, and this may provide a way for exposing cancer cells without killing healthy cells.
Infrared light is similar in many ways to visible light, however, and the two forms have different applications. For example, when an object absorbs infrared radiation, it becomes colder. The thickness of this frost can vary, depending on the material the object is made of and the temperature. While objects which have undergone infrared heating are less likely to melt or expand, they are still warmer than their surroundings. When objects are heated within the near infrared waves, this absorption occurs quicker, and the resulting changes are often much more dramatic.
Infrared works on objects which are colder than the average human’s body, which makes it particularly effective in low-visibility situations. For example, snow and ice don’t break up into easily-moving bits because they are colder than the average human’s body. This makes snowplowing more difficult, and it means workers need to do their job slower to prevent an accident. In addition, if you had to look for something under your snowplow, you wouldn’t be able to see very well because it would be dark. If infrared saws are attached to the front of vehicles, they can help drivers find things beneath the snow because the heat from the engine is bouncing off of the underside of the plow and then hitting the infrared sensor, which then converts the temperature change into visible light.
The infrared spectrum is made up of seven different spectrums, all of which have their own purposes. The shortest wavelength has the lowest emissivity of all the spectrums, while the longest wavelength has the highest emissivity. The visible light spectrum consists of just the short wavelength rays and includes all of the colors we know and love, while the infrared spectrum includes red, green, and blue, as well as the colors of heat. In between these two spectrums lie gamma rays, which have the highest visible light emission and can penetrate objects many times larger than the eye could see.
A typical infrared scanner can scan an area about one centimeter across in less than a second. A handheld device is ideal for scanning large spaces, though handheld devices are typically used for surface surveys, rather than interior photography or remote sensing. It would be impractical to use one of these scanners inside of a passenger vehicle, but they make great survey tools because they are so easy and portable to use. If you want to keep track of your trucks or other vehicles in a parking lot, an infrared light source will help you see far away.