Glossary

Glossary

4K and 8K are measurements of video resolutions, using shorthand for the approximate horizontal dimensions of the video. 4K is a video that is roughly 4,000 pixels wide, most commonly 3840×2160.
Automatic Back Focus is the ability for a camera to remotely or automatically adjust its back focus distance.
A camera’s aperture is the size of opening of the the lens. A larger aperture allows more light (or thermal energy) to reach the sensor.
A type of coating applied to lens elements to maximize the performance and accuracy of the lens by reducing internal reflections.
The ratio of width to height in a video display or image sensor.
A specific product that was released in 2015, some incorrectly use it as a generic term for anti-drone rather than a specific product.
An automatic adjustment to regulate and optimize the amount of light or infrared energy a camera receives.
A bit rate is the amount of data being sent over a data stream. For video streams a higher bitrate will allow for a higher video quality with less compression artifacts.
A setting on many cameras that allows the operator to decide which areas of a scene should be properly exposed.
A bolometer is a sensitive device for measuring the amount of electromagnetic radiation, essentially a very sensitive digital thermometer.
A user interface that allows operators to monitor and control a surveillance system, as well as to analyze information collected by the system.
A type of camera sensor used for converting light into digital information.
Closed Circuit Television is the use of video cameras to transmit a signal to a specific place, on a limited set of monitors. Some countries refer to CCTV cameras as a general term for surveillance cameras.
Cooled thermal cameras use an integrated cryogenic cooler to chill the thermal imaging core to temperatures as low as -196°C (-321°F). Cooling the sensor reduces noise, increasing the sensitivity and accuracy of the thermal image.
Cryogenic cooling involves cooling sensors (or other parts) down to extremely low temperatures ( Below ~ 120 Kelvin or -153 Celsius) to reduce incoming noise and get more accurate readings.
CUAS or Counter-UAS (Unmanned Aircraft System) is a military term for solutions that are designed to detect, track, and ultimately disrupt and destroy unmanned airborne vehicles. In commercial and industrial applications the term anti-drone is often used.
Based on the DRI standards, detection means that you will be able to see the target, however it will be little more than a speck. There is a 50% chance that the target will be visible on at least two pixels, and and a skilled operator should be able to tell if the target may be something of suspicion.
Digital describes electronic technology that generates, stores, and processes data in terms of two states: positive and non-positive.
Digital Zoom crops the desired portion of the image to take up the entire frame.
A process of removing ‘noise’ from signals such as audio or video signals.
The changes in frequency of any kind of sound or light wave produced by a moving source with respect to an observer.
DORI is an industry standard that defines how close a subject needs to be to a visible light surveillance camera to meet the detail thresholds for Detection, Observation, Recognition and Identification.
DRI (Detection Recognition Identification) is a set of standards providing a means of measuring the effective distance of thermal infrared cameras (also known as the Johnson Criteria).
An acronym for Digital Video Recorder, it is a device that records digital video streams for future playback.
A method of stabilizing a video feed without physically steadying the camera.
Waves of electromagnetic energy that travel through space. Examples include radio waves, WiFi, microwaves, radiant heat, visible light, ultraviolet, x‑rays and gamma rays.
The combination of all of the various frequencies of electromagnetic radiation. This includes radio waves, WiFi, microwaves, radiant heat, visible light, ultraviolet, x‑rays and gamma rays.
The ratio of a lens’s focal length to its aperture diameter. A low ƒ/# means a larger aperture area, which results in a higher light or infrared collecting ability while a high ƒ/# means a smaller aperture area, which has lower light or infrared collecting ability.
Refers to the technology used to create a thermal infrared image of a scene without having to “scan” the scene with a moving sensor. It is also the name of a thermal imaging camera manufacturer (FLIR Systems).
Focal length is a number in millimeters (mm) that indicates the magnification (or optical power) of a camera lens. It is inversely proportional to the field of view of the camera.
The field of view (FOV) is the width of the scene that a camera detects on its sensor. A smaller FOV means that a camera is more “zoomed in” (to use a term that most people are familiar with).
Active gyro stabilization is when information from a gyroscope is used to mechanically stabilize a PTZ camera system. This is done by using the pan/tilt head to counteract movements detected by the gyroscope, reducing the perceived shake and vibration to keep the image stabilized.
A camera setting that restores detail to brighter parts of an image that might be overexposed.
Based on the DRI standards, identification of an object means that you are able to differentiate within a class of objects. For example, this person looks like a tall woman wearing a dress, that person looks like a soldier.
Indium Antimonide (InSb) is a type MWIR cooled thermal camera sensor.
ITAR is a United States regulation to control the export of defense and military related technologies. Some of our products fall under these regulations and may only be sold or exported if authorization from the Department of State is received.
A laser is a device that outputs a beam of uniform coherent light in a single wavelength.
LiDAR is an acronym of “Light Detection And Ranging” (or “laser imaging, detection, and ranging”). It is essentially a special combination of 3D scanning and laser scanning.
Used to measure the distance to a target by determining the time required for a pulse of laser light to travel to the target, reflect from it and return.
A subset of the infrared band of the electromagnetic spectrum, covering the wavelengths ranging from 8µm to 14µm (8,000 to 14,000nm). This is the radiant heat that uncooled thermal imaging cameras see.

An acronym for Mobile Command Center (sometimes referred to as MCS or Mobile Command Station).

Mercury Cadmium Telluride (MCT) is a thermal detector material for MWIR cooled thermal imaging. MCT Cooled (IR) detectors are used for military and scientific applications.
One million pixels, used to measure the resolution of an image or image sensor. Higher megapixel images contain more potential detail but are also larger file sizes.
A microbolometer is a specific type of bolometer (a very sensitive digital thermometer where its electrical resistance varies with temperature) used as a detector in a thermal camera.
Microns, also known as micrometers (represented as µm) are a length of measurement equal to one millionth of a meter. (1,000µm is equal to 1mm.)
A milliradian (SI-symbol mrad, sometimes also abbreviated mil) is an SI derived unit for angular measurement which is defined as a thousandth of a radian (0.001 radian).
A camera system that houses multiple image sensors and lenses in a single integrated system to cover a wide range of wavelengths and/or a wide range of zoom levels.
A subset of the infrared band of the electromagnetic spectrum, covering the wavelengths ranging from 3µm to 5µm (3,000 to 5,000nm). This is the radiant heat that cooled thermal imaging cameras see.
nm stands for nanometer. It is equal to one billionth of a meter.
A US Act that bans camera components from specific manufacturers from being used in federal agencies.
A subset of the infrared band of the electromagnetic spectrum, covering the wavelengths ranging from 0.7µm to 1.4µm (700 to 1400nm).
A rating for a laser that specifies the recommended safe distance for eye exposure. Looking directly at the laser from a distance closer than the NOHD is potentially unsafe and may damage the retina.
A thermal imaging sensor adjustment to correct for uneven temperature readings on the sensor.

ONVIF is a standard for IP video surveillance devices. While it usually works well for basic video integrations, ONVIF is not ideal for handling PTZ commands of EO/IR systems and does not allow for many advanced commands such as switching thermal palettes, enabling gyro stabilization, enabling NIR/Fog Filters, etc.

Optoelectronics is the branch of technology concerned with the combined use of electronics and light.

An industry standard protocol for control of pan-tilt-zoom cameras. Typically used over an RS485 serial line.
Systems designed to detect unauthorized entry into a defined perimeter.
Pixel pitch is the distance between two adjacent pixels in the sensor, measured from pixel center to pixel center.
The amount of potential detail that a camera offers at a given distance. A higher PPM value means that the image definition is more detailed.
PTZ stands for Pan Tilt Zoom. It describes the range of user-controllable motion on most modern security cameras.
Radar is an acronym for RAdio Detection And Ranging. Radar emits pules of radio waves and listens for echoes of those radio waves to determine the location of objects.
RDK stands for Rapid Deployment Kit. It is a kit that usually consists of a camera system, mount, display and a Joystick Controller as well as a variety of other items depending on application and tasking.
Based on the DRI standards, recognition does not mean that you can recognize a person. Recognition simply means that you are able to recognize an object’s class (is it a human or a car, truck or a tank, etc).
Radio Frequency refers to oscillatory change in a circuit, or the frequency at which radio waves are transmitted.
Jamming wireless signals is defined as the disruption of existing wireless communications by decreasing the signal-to-noise ratio at receiver sides through the transmission of interfering wireless signals.
The ratio between the desired information in a signal, and the undesired information in a signal.
Slew to Cue is when a PTZ camera uses information from external sensors (Radar or PIDS) to automatically move the camera view to that target. It is one of the most effective solutions for auto-tracking targets.
A Sterling cooler is a highly efficient cryogenic cooler.
SWaP is an Acronym commonly used in the security/aerospace industries for Size Weight and Power. It is common to require camera systems to be “low SWaP” in order to meet conservative requirements for applications like UAVs or mobile deployments.
SWIR is an acronym for Short Wave Infrared. It refers to the wavelengths from 0.9 to 1.7 microns.
A UAS/UAV is an Unmanned Aircraft System/Vehicle, more commonly known as a drone.
Ultra High Definition is a term used to refer to resolutions of 3840×2160 (4K) or greater.
An imager that collects visible light (400 to 700nm) and converts it to a color image that replicates normal human vision.
a combination of software and hardware that monitors events from CCTV cameras, alarms, and/or other sensors.
VOx or Vanadium Oxide, is a type of thermal energy sensing semiconductor.
Vertical Take-Off and Landing. VTOL refers to an aircraft that can take off and land vertically (no runway needed).
Wavelength is the distance between peaks of a wave. When measuring light, the wavelength determines the frequency of the energy and thus the color of light.
A camera feature that allows a wider range of bright and dark detail to be captured, restoring detail in areas of underexposed shadows or overexposed highlights.
The X number (seen advertised as a number followed by an X) is the zoom ratio, and is used to indicate the zoom range of the lens (difference from wide to narrow).
A cooled thermal imaging sensor that provides many of the benefits of InSb and MCT but with improved reliability and 30% less cooling, as well as improved resolution and smaller pixel pitch.
XBn/XBp is a type of cooled thermal camera sensor type made out of either an InAsSb or an AlSbAs superlattice.
ZLID is a technology for long-range IR laser illumination that adjusts the laser’s intensity and focus area to sync with the field of view of a PTZ zoom camera.