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Infrared Temperature Scanners

Body Temperature Measurement Solutions

Scanning body temperature accurately and quickly is highly important for public health and safety, especially during times of crisis or pandemic like COVID-19. Infrared technology is critical here, as it allows non-contact, quick, and efficient temperature scans. Infrared temperature scanners and other thermal imaging systems are critical to maintain safe work environments and public spaces by identifying individuals with elevated skin temperatures.

How do infrared temperature scanners work in detecting temperature?

Infrared cameras and thermal imaging systems don’t actually measure temperature — they measure the radiated energy from the first 1/1000 of an inch of a surface. The radiant energy is then converted into an electronic signal that produces a thermal image with temperature calculations.

FM 320 & FM 640 view of screen - employees using infrared temperature scanners

However, it’s important to remember that this energy may or may not be a function of the subject’s temperature. In many cases though, a trained thermographer armed with the necessary knowledge is capable of calculating a very precise temperature. To do so, the thermographer must measure the temperature of the target and input that data into the camera for accurate temperature measurements. Remember that temperature measurements can be relative to the overall environment, so when we measure anything, we compare it to a standard.

This is a complex process, so proper training is absolutely critical when using an infrared temperature scanner. Visit the Infrared Training Institute for information on how infrared technology works and upcoming training sessions.

Infrared Temperature Measurement Instruments

Infrared Cameras Inc offers an array of skin temperature measurement devices, from infrared thermometers to thermal imaging systems. ICI sells six infrared temperature measurement devices and one software program approved by the FDA for adjunctive medical use.

While the ICI P and S series cameras have FDA approval, ICI also offers other medical-use devices, including non-contact thermometers and handheld skin temperature measuring infrared cameras. Handheld cameras such as the T-Cam P Series can be operated one-handedly and are often budget friendlier, but less accurate than the P and S series IR cameras.

ICI has devices with .1 to .2 ℃ accuracy, as well as some fixed and handheld systems coming accurate to .3 ℃, .5 ℃ and .8 ℃ accuracy.

See medical products below and visit our product pages for specs and data sheets.


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    Thermal Cameras vs. Infrared Temperature Guns

    Not sure which type of skin temperature measurement device you need? Both devices measure infrared radiation from a surface and produce a resulting temperature, but what’s the difference? This guide should help you decide the best infrared temperature scanner for your needs.

    Thermal Cameras:

    • Highly accurate — some ICI devices have a margin of error as low as ±.1 °C
    • Require a trained thermographer for proper use
    • Produce images and videos with temperatures displayed on a monitor
    • Measure temperature of every pixel in an image
    • Scan temperatures from 3-10 meters away
    • Include software

    Temperature Guns (Non-Contact Infrared Thermometers):

    • More budget friendly
    • Easier to use
    • Produce temperature readings on an LCD screen
    • Measure temperature of one spot
    • Scan temperatures from 5-15 cm away

    FAQs on Infrared Thermometers

    Below are some commonly asked questions regarding infrared thermometers.

    Can you take body temperature with an infrared thermometer?

    Infrared thermometers can be used to measure body temperatures from up to 15 centimeters away from the target zone and provide results in less than half a second. These devices are highly sanitary because they are non-contact, reducing the chance of spreading infectious diseases.

    Are infrared thermometers accurate?

    ICI’s non-contact thermometers have a margin of error of ±.3 °C on skin surface temperature scannings. Infrared thermometers read the surface temperature of a target — not the internal temperature. This means that for fever detection, an infrared thermometer can catch if someone has an elevated skin temperature, though this doesn’t necessarily indicate a fever.

    How to use a non-contact infrared thermometer

    To properly use a non-contact infrared thermometer to scan body temperature, stand 5 – 15 centimeters away from your target. Power on the device and point it at the inside corner of the patient’s eye, holding still. The temperature reading will display within 1 second. Many devices, such as ICI’s HotSpot IR, are battery-powered. You can set an alarm to sound when a temperature reading is abnormally high. ICI’s infrared thermometer powers off automatically and lets you choose between Celsius and Fahrenheit for readings.

    Where do you take temperature with an infrared thermometer?

    Often, people using a handheld infrared temperature scanner will point the device at the patient’s forehead. However, this is a relatively cool part of the body. It’s best to point the thermometer at the inner canthus of the eye — right in the inner corner. This is the hottest part of the human face.

    How to Measure Body Temperature Using a Thermal Camera

    At ICI, we follow and urge our customers to follow the ISO/TR 13154 standard when it comes to using infrared temperature scanners. This standard covers the deployment, implementation, and operational guidelines for identifying febrile humans using a screening thermograph. According to this standard, users should:

    1. Properly set up screening sites that match ideal environmental settings that are:
      1. Indoors.
      2. Away from A/C ducts that might blow on the person being screened, the camera, or temperature target.
      3. Free of reflective backgrounds like glass panels.
      4. Free of sunlight or strong lighting.
      5. Humidity-controlled.
    2. Screen individuals one at a time in a single file line.
    3. Screen the skin temperature of the inner canthus of the eye.
    4. Make sure the field of view is set up so the individual and the temperature reference source are both included.
    5. Have a trained thermographer watch the display screen to detect elevated skin temperatures and flag anyone with a high body temperature to be pulled aside for further testing.

    Please read and review the ISO standard in its entirety for complete details on how to measure body temperature using thermographs.

    This diagram shows what a public temperature screening looks like according to the standards described in ISO 13154.

    FM 320 & FM 640 setup for skin temperature screens- no metal detector

    Have More Questions?

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