Could Thermal Imaging Technology be the Future of COVID-19 Detection?
Many countries, including the UK, are beginning to ease their lockdown rules and employees are beginning to return to work. Yet, businesses are still trying to find the best ways of keeping both staff and customers safe.
Common methods have included social distancing requirements, stringent cleaning and capacity limitations yet, many are recognising that technology will soon play a critical role in identifying individuals with the virus before they even enter the premises.
This is where thermal imaging cameras play a vital role, with establishments such as casinos, retailers and manufacturing facilities already investing in the technology to help them proactively detect elevated temperatures. It is in fact expected that many other businesses invest in thermal imaging technology to help them further reopen in a new COVID-19 world.
With the spread of COVID-19 such a prevalent issue, business owners are expected to look at how security solutions, more specifically thermal imaging technology, could be key to safely reopen.
What Does Thermal Imaging Do?
With thermal imaging, cameras can use sensors to detect infrared heat emitted from a person no matter whether they are alone or in a crowd.
Could Thermal Imaging Spot the Virus?
In short, no. Thermal imaging cannot spot whether or not a person has COVID-19, however, thermal imaging and infrared cameras cannot be used to sense more than just heat. They can, in fact, detect Elevated Body Temperatures (EBT) and minuscule differences in heat, even as little as +/-2.0c. The temperature will be easily spotted as either different shades of grey or specific colours. So, if someone was to show a high temperature they could immediately be taken aside for additional screening.
What Else Could Thermal Imaging Cameras Spot?
Many thermal imaging cameras also have the potential to detect face masks and whether or not a person is wearing one. When someone is not wearing a mask, it will provide an automated alert through radio or mobile alert. Face mask detection technology will also have the capability to produce reports to determine levels of capability across the organisation. For example, across departments, time of day and other such parameters.
Thermal imaging cameras also have the potential to determine whether people are social distancing and the distance between one person and another. This will generate a report of when social distancing violations occur.
They can also detect whether a person crosses an entry or exit point. It will display the number of people inside a location and indicate whether or not maximum occupancy has been reached or not, allowing you to enforce control measures around the entry.
How Can Thermal Cameras Be Used?
Thermal imaging cameras with real-time heat-based imaging of people can be streamed to a monitor to allow security personnel to screen visitors and staff.
This system, in fact, offers a much more accurate solution and provides a higher throughput of people for scanning, as well as the ability to monitor and manage alerts. With most systems, this thermal imaging technology can be integrated further into other systems including turnstiles and access control systems. Such a combination can make an ideal solution for premises’ that requires a line of defence in high traffic areas or when a quick flow of people is essential such as office buildings during the morning rush, transport stations or even during shift changes.
Installing thermal imaging cameras for scanning elevated skin temperatures will quickly become the new normal as more and more companies choose to move back into the workplace. Correct usage of such equipment will likely achieve optimal success and the best possible accuracy in skin temperature screening on arrival.
To discuss thermal cameras further, be sure to get in touch with our team of experts today on 0117 259 1000.