Image Fusion technology
Firstsight Vision offers Image Fusion technology from Waterfall Solutions to allow visible waveband and thermal images of the same field of view to be merged. This provides far more useful surveillance information from the scene than either of the individual images. The technique analyses incoming video in order to maximise scene detail and contrast in the fused output image. Compensation can be made for misalignment of the sensors.
A powerful camera combination for Image Fusion is the Toshiba IK-1000ME extreme low light colour camera and a miniature high performance Eye-R25 IR camera from Opgal Industries. The Toshiba IK-1000ME has an outstanding dynamic range, which allows clear, crisp colour images to be obtained at light levels in the region of 10-4 lux (equivalent to moonless overcast conditions) or in lighting right up to 102 lux (equivalent to direct sunlight). The compact Eye-R25 operates in the 8-14µm waveband range and is effective in poor visibility conditions.
Combining these two cameras using Image Fusion reduces image artefacts such as blooming, halo and flare (for example from weapon firing). The automatic image quality optimisation extends the imaging capability in poor weather conditions and in both high and low light levels, and where the thermal contrast is poor.
Practical benefits include improved feature extraction leading to reduced division of attention between disparate displays, reduced mental correlation and improved workload management. Applications include surveillance and security, defence in fixed installations, ground-based vehicles, fixed and rotary wing aircraft, and police aviation.