Military scientists working on thermal vision aid to virus control


Scientists at Poland's Military University of Technology (WAT) are working with doctors on ways to use thermal cameras to monitor public places to identify people with raised temperatures as a means to help in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

The system's designers foresee that it will work in offices and ministries as well as in other workplaces, factories and even shopping centres. The so-called FACE-COV system uses thermal vision technology to automatically monitor public places and detect markers of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The system will be made up of ultra-red cameras together with cameras working in the visual spectrum. The thermal camera will exactly measure the temperature of people who enter the building on the basis of a thermal image of a fragment of the face, taking into account various environmental factors. A further element is a thermometer which can be installed at the entrance to buildings.

"It is a contactless, remote system," explained Dr Mariusz Kastek of WAT's Opto-electronics Institute. "It's enough for the person to hold still for two or three seconds to get a reading. If the system states that the body temperature of a person is raised, that person will go to a very exact measuring system nearby." Those confirmed to have a raised temperature will be further tested for Covid-19, Kastek said.

He told PAP that a positive feature of the FACE-COV system is that it will be validated by the Military Institute of Medicine. The medical certificate gives 100-percent certainty that all measurements of human body temperature are conducted properly from the medical point of view.