Night Vi­sion vs. Ther­mal

Firepower - - KNIVES ILLUSTRATED -

Ther­mal be­cause than its sur­round­ings, Op­tics the sub­ject’s de­tect the tem­per­a­ture ra­di­a­tion ther­mal or op­tic heat, is higher will and pro­vide an im­age. Since they de­tect ra­di­a­tion, ther­mal op­tics do not re­quire vis­i­ble light. Night vi­sion re­quires a light source to pro­vide an im­age. In many cases, the stars and moon pro­vide enough light to pro­duce an im­age, but shad­ows make it dif­fi­cult to see small de­tails. Heat ra­di­a­tion and light are both parts of the elec­tro­mag­netic spec­trum, but an op­tic de­signed to am­plify light won’t see ra­di­a­tion en­ergy, and vice versa.

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