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color infra-red camera

Use width of ir spectrum to produce color photos at night
  [vote for,

Current infra-red photo technology (as I understand it), is what allows for taking so-called "night-vision" photos in darkness or near-darkness. However, the pictures always come out monochromatic (usually green).

The infra-red spectrum, while not as wide as the visible light spectrum, could produce color photos if each area of one spectrum were mapped onto the corresponding area of the other spectrum. For instance, the highest-wavelength infra red would map as violet, and the lowest-wavelength infra-red would map as red, with the other colors ranging in-between. Thus, the minor variations in the infra-red spectrum would be translated by the camera into the wider variations of the visible light spectrum, and the images would appear in color.

jlmink, Feb 05 2002

False color Near-IR image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap020104.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color Gamma radiation image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap020112.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color UV image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap020131.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color X-Ray image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap020110.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color radio (408MHz) wave image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap011020.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color IR image http://antwrp.gsfc..../apod/ap010914.html
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

False color search at NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day http://antwrp.gsfc...._search?false+color
[phoenix, Feb 06 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

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       That sounds pretty smart, but the monochromatic green images look so cool!
snarfyguy, Feb 06 2002

       While the "colors" shown by such a system would bear little relation to those of the real world, sensing near and far IR separately could be useful in trying to detect objects in the presence of an otherwise-confusing background. One problem, though, would be that lenses refract different lengths of IR differently; if the near-IR image was in focus, the far-IR image would be out of focus and vice versa.   

       On the other hand, that in and of itself might be a way to identify what wavelengths of IR an object is giving off if one's camera has the spectral range to handle it.
supercat, Feb 06 2002


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