Companies, governments, and other entities, all around the world are either planning or using thermal imaging as an essential part of their strategy to help reopen their country’s economy. The purpose of using this type of technology is to detect possible cases of Corona Virus Disease-19, also known as COVID-19, and filter out people in public spaces who are suspected of having Corona Virus Disease-19 infection.
It helps detect the increased temperature in people because of a fever, one of the most common signs or symptoms of COVID-19. High temps can also show a fever resulting from other illnesses similar to COVID-19, as well as non-viral causes like inflammation, menopause, or pregnancy.
Not all Corona Virus Disease-19 patients experienced high temperatures, and people usually reduce their body temperature through over-the-counter medications. This article will show people the importance of thermal imaging in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and other benefits of this technology.
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The Main conclusions
Cameras with thermal imaging features detect infrared radiation. It can measure the surface body temperature of individuals, as well as objects from a distance. It is currently used on public streets, healthcare facilities, retail businesses, offices, public transit hubs, and airports.
This technology can correlate core temps with infections like Influenza in a controlled environment. Still, its technical limitations render the technology less effective when it comes to public settings with high traffic volume. Civil rights and privacy advocates have raised serious concerns about loss of opportunity and discrimination resulting from temperature imaging programs.
Companies considering using thermal imaging technology as part of their anti-pandemic strategies need to analyze the benefits of this type of measure carefully, outweighs the risk of opportunity loss, discrimination, as well as the civil rights of the public who will be subjected to this kind of temperature screening. These concerns are usually acute when companies and governments screen people in large numbers.
Advice from public health experts, regulators, and public health officials need to be considered when it comes to this assessment. Companies need to consult the public who will be subjected to the measure as part of the learning process about the public’s legitimate expectations when it comes to the rights and safety in the face of the current pandemic.
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Technologies being used
Some thermal imaging cam manufacturers explain that their devices can detect infrared radiation, as well as to measure the surface temp of objects and people. They do this by measuring temp differences between people or objects. Thermal cams can be used to sense an increase in skin temperature, a substitute for core body temp, or identifying individuals who may or may not have a fever.
It allows thermal cams to single out individuals with higher skin temperature for further testing with tools similar to a traditional thermometer. As experts acknowledge, these devices are not a replacement for devices that directly measure the infected individual’s core body temp.
According to manufacturers, thermal cams need to be appropriately calibrated in laboratories and regularly recalibrated to make sure that the temperature reading of these devices matches the actual temperature of objects and people. Experts recommend having these cameras recalibrated at least once a year.
Not only that, aside from reading temps, but these cams also have a screening mode, where the temperature of a person or object is measured to SAT or Sampled Average Temperature value. The value us an average of temps of at least ten random people chosen at a specific testing location.
To find out more about thermal detection devices, you can read more on this page or visit forum sites.
The user then set the alarm temp at 1°C to 3°C, greater than the Sampled Average Temperature value, and the device displays an alarm when it detects an individual in the zone. The SAT value can be pretty accurate compared to absolute temp since it accounts for potential variation during the screening process throughout the day.
These variations include fluctuations in people’s temp because of natural environmental changes like ambient temp changes. The cam’s reading accuracy is affected by various factors, including its distance from the person or object. Experts and manufacturers suggest that the device needs to be as close to its target as possible, and use long-range lenses to get accurate readings.
Its settings and functions can affect the accuracy of the device; that is why it needs to be reconfigured as often as possible. This technology can be paired with various technology. It can be mounted in drones for broad-scale aerial surveillance.
These drones are equipped with computer vision that senses respiratory and heart rate, detects people when they sneeze or coughs, and measures how far everyone apart from each other can enforce social distancing protocols. Reportedly, this technology can do all this feature through a single camera from more or less 150 feet.
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Companies and government agencies considering the use of the temperature measuring devices as part of their safety plans should need to be careful when analyzing whether the benefits of this technology outweigh the risk of loss of opportunity, the risk of people’s civil rights, and discriminations of the public who will be subjected to this kind of public screening.
People should always consider the advice from public health experts and officials, as well as the advice from manufacturers and regulators when it comes to assessing the situation. Not only that, but we should also consider the opinions of people who will be subjected to the technology and measures as part of the public’s learning when it comes to their expectations and safety in the current pandemic.
We all know that there is a small chance that the normal world we loved and knew is not coming back because of the COVID-19 pandemic. That is why it is best to be acclimated with new safety protocols and modern technology to prevent the spread of this virus. The old normal is not coming back; we are now living in a world of new normal.