Abstract

In this paper, we theoretically and experimentally demonstrate that the imaging speed of the optomechanical focal plane array infrared imaging system can be significantly improved by changing the pressure in the vacuum chamber. The decrease in the thermal time constant is attributed to the additional thermal conductance caused by air. The response time will be greatly shortened to about 1/3 time in low vacuum (around 102Pa) compared with that in high vacuum. At a chamber pressure of 50 Pa, the “trailing” in the IR image of a moving hot iron is eliminated with negligible deterioration in the image quality. Moreover, infrared images on rapid occurrence events, such as ignition of an alcohol blast burner, lighting and fusion of a tungsten filament, are captured at a frame rate up to 200 Hz. The above results show that the proposed pressure-dependent performance provides a way to improve the system imaging speed and helps to slow down a dynamic event, which is of great value to the uncooled IR imaging systems in practical applications.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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