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  • First True Thermal Binocular Debuts
Nov 2010
PORTLAND, Ore., Nov. 11, 2010 — During the Association of the US Army’s annual meeting in October, Flir Systems Inc. introduced the world’s first true thermal binoculars. The Recon BN6 and Recon BN10 provide an authentic binocular viewing experience and a true depth-of-field capability.

Two thermal cameras, one for each eye, provide the same parallax effect achieved by the human visual system, allowing the viewer to experience a 3-D view. This technology enhances the ability to judge distances and relative distance of objects in the scene, making the Recon BN series a far more useful tool for reconnaissance, surveillance and similar tasks.

“Largely due to cost reasons, a true thermal binocular has not been available until now,” said Bill Sundermeier, president of Flir Government Systems. “The concept is not new, but the expense of putting two thermal cameras in one product made the technology cost-prohibitive. The widely available alternative has been a ‘bi-ocular’ where both eyes view the same camera. This has worked reasonably well, except that you can’t distinguish distance, prohibiting depth perception. With FLIR’s vast production volumes and low costs, we are able to offer a true binocular for less than the price of a typical bi-ocular system.”

Based on Flir’s advanced uncooled thermal camera technology, the Recon BN6 and BN10 feature long battery life, light weight and full immersion capability. Flir is one of very few companies capable of producing both uncooled and cooled IR focal plane arrays (FPAs), and has the world’s highest volume production capability for vanadium oxide (VOx) uncooled microbolometers, with an internal capacity of more than 250,000 yielded devices per year.

Flir is a merchant supplier of uncooled cameras to the automotive industry and other applications, including full MIL SPEC products for military and homeland defense agencies around the world.

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The optical phenomenon that causes relative motion between two objects when the eyepoint is moved laterally. When parallax appears in a telescope between the image and reticle, this indicates the image has not been formed in the plane of the reticle.
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