Art Analysis

To gain new insights into each painting produced by its artist, art historians or researchers often bring their investigation beyond the visible surface. For such a purpose, SWIR imaging presents a non-invasive method to study a painting without damaging it.

 

The ability of SWIR photons to penetrate through paint allows art historians or researchers to see beneath the painting on the surface. Doing so reveals the pencil/charcoal underdrawings made by the artist. Apart from its use in verifying the authenticity of the artwork, it also helps us gain a deeper understanding of the artist’s original intention and creation processes.

Adaptive Optics

Adaptive Optics (AO) or wavefront sensing (WFS) is a technique to measure wavefront errors or distortions and correct the resulting image in real time. Often used in astronomical applications, they help to produce quality images that enable researchers to conduct accurate analysis.

 

In astronomy systems with AO, a bright reference star is often used to measure the distortion of the optical wavefront due to a turbulent atmosphere. Through the use of infrared in wavefront sensing, also fainter reference stars in the sky can be used for AO with low noise short-wave infrared cameras.

Infrared Laser Beam Analysis

Modern day scientific, medical and industrial applications, utilise infrared laser beam analysis in a variety of day-to-day operations. Many applications also involve the use of high-power lasers. As such, the performance of the laser beam needs to be regularly monitored to ensure safe and precise operation of the laser.

 

Some common uses of lasers are:

1. Nd:YAG (Neodymium‐doped Yttrium Aluminium Garnet). These lasers emit at 1064 nm in the near or short‐wave infrared range. Many applications exist in medicine, spectroscopy and defence.

2. Eye‐safe laser diodes at 1550 nm: These lasers are commonly used for telecommunications, fibre‐optics, free‐space laser communications and laser range finders.

3. Laser diodes in the range between 2000 nm and 2500 nm: These lasers typically find application in medical systems.

4. Quantum Cascade lasers (QCL) in the 3000 to 5000 nm wavelength range: Applications exist in the field of infrared countermeasures and spectroscopy.

5. Carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers centered at 9.4 and 10.6 μm: CO2 lasers are often used in industrial welding and cutting applications, as well as for soft‐tissue surgery.

 

Since these lasers operate in the infrared wavelength band, IR cameras sensitive to the respective wavelength range have to be used for beam analysis or profiling.

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