Near-Infrared Camera

<iframe width="480" height="360" src="//" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> _The Infragram Kickstarter video, a great introduction to the project._ ###Introduction Vineyards, large farms, and NASA all use **near-infrared photography** for assessing plant health, usually by mounting expensive sensors on airplanes and satellites. At Public Lab, **we've developed a Do-It-Yourself way to take these kinds of photos**, enabling us to monitor our environment through quantifiable data. Our technique uses a modified digital camera to capture near-infrared and blue light in the same image, but in different color channels. We then [post-process the image](#How+to+process+your+images:) (using []( to attempt to infer how much it is photosynthesizing. This allows us to better understand and quantify how much of the available light plants are metabolizing into sugar via photosynthesis. > You can do this yourself (as with all Public Lab tools) but there is also an [Infragram DIY Filter Pack]( available in the Public Lab Store. We [ran a Kickstarter]( for a version of this camera we call the **Infragram**. [Read more about it here &raquo;](/wiki/infragram) Here's the video from the Kickstarter, which offers a nice visual explanation of the technique: <iframe style="display:inline;" width="480" height="360" src="" frameborder="0"> </iframe> <br /> ###What is it good for? Multispectral or infrared/visible photography has seen a variety of applications in the decades [since it was developed](#Background:+satellite+infrared+imaging). We have focused on the following uses: - Take pictures to examine plant health in backyard gardens, farms, parks, and nearby wetlands - Monitor your household plants - Teach students about plant growth and photosynthesis - Create exciting science fair projects - Generate verifiable, open environmental data - Check progress of environmental restoration projects - Document unhealthy areas of your local ecology (for instance, algal blooms) Notable uses include [this photograph of an unidentified plume of material in the Gowanus Canal](/notes/liz/8-3-2011/infrared-balloon-image-reveals-gowanus-plume) (and [writeup by TechPresident]( and a variety of projects at a small farm in New Hampshire [at the annual iFarm event](/tag/ifarm). The [Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium]( has also [collaborated with Public Lab contributors to measure wetlands loss](/notes/shannon/5-29-2011/plots-and-lumcon-collaboration) following the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. **Here's an example** of what one of our "Infragram" cameras sees (left) and the post-processing analysis which shows photosynthetic activity, or plant health (right). This picture was taken from a commercial airplane flight: [![infragram](]( ###How does it work? **Camera modification:** We've worked on several different techniques, from [dual camera systems](/wiki/dual-camera-kit-guide) to the current, single-camera technique. This involves removing the infrared-blocking filter from [almost any digital camera](/tag/infragram-conversion), and adding a [specific blue filter](/wiki/infragram#Filters). ![swap.png]( This filters out the red light, and **measures infrared light in its place** using a piece of carefully chosen "NGB" or "infrablue" filter. Read more about [the development of this technique here]( You can also learn more about how digital camera image sensors detect colors [at this great tutorial by Bigshot]( **Post-processing:** Once you take a multispectral photograph with a modified camera, you must [post-process it](#How+to+process+your+images:), compositing the infrared and visible data to generate a new image which (if it works) displays healthy, photosynthetically active areas as bright regions. An in-depth article on the technique by Chris Fastie (albeit using red instead of blue for visible light) [can be found here](/wiki/ndvi-plots-ir-camera-kit). **History of the project:** While we used to use a two-camera system, [research by Chris Fastie](/notes/cfastie/04-20-2013/superblue) and [other Public Lab contributors](/tag/near-infrared-camera) have led to the use of a **single camera which can image in both infrared and visible light simultaneously**. The Infrablue filter is just a piece of carefully chosen theater gel which was examined using [a DIY spectrometer](/wiki/spectrometer). You can use this filter to turn most webcams or cheap point-and-shoots into an infrared/visible camera. ###Background: satellite infrared imaging The study of Earth's environment from space got its start in 1972 when the first Landsat satellite was launched. The multispectral scanner it carried, like the scanners on all subsequent Landsat satellites, recorded images with both visible and near infrared light. Remote sensing "scientists" quickly learned that by combining visible and infrared data, they could reveal critical information about the health of vegetation. For example, the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) highlights the difference between the red and infrared wavelengths that are reflected from vegetation. Because red light is used by plants for photosynthesis but infrared light is not, NDVI allows "scientists" to estimate the amount of healthy foliage in every satellite image. Thousands of "scientists", including landscape ecologists, global change biologists, and habitat specialists have relied on these valuable satellite-based NDVI images for decades. There are public sources of infrared photography for the US available through the Department of Agriculture -- [NAIP]( and [Vegscape]( -- but this imagery is not collected when, as often, or at useable scale for individuals who are managing small plots. ![ndvi-vis-comparison.jpg](/system/images/photos/000/001/289/medium/ndvi-vis-comparison.jpg) <p><em>Caption: Normal color photo (top) and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) image. NDVI image was derived from two color channels in a single photo taken with a camera modified with a special infrared filter. Note that tree trunks, brown grass, and rocks have very low NDVI values because they are not photosynthetic. Healthy plants typically have NDVI values between 0.1 and 0.9. Images by Chris Fastie.</em> Visit the [gallery of high-res images by Chris Fastie]( **** ## Frequently Asked Questions <a class="btn btn-primary" href="/post?tags=question:multispectral-imaging,question:infrared,question:infragram&template=question">Ask a question about infrared imaging</a> [notes:question:infragram] **** ## How to process your images (this section is moved to and updated at We're working on an easy process to generate composite, infrared + visible images that will reveal new details of plant health and photosynthesis. There are several approaches: * The **easiest way** is to process your images online at the free, open source []( * [Ned Horning's](/profile/nedhorning) [PhotoMonitoring plugin](/wiki/photo-monitoring-plugin) * Manual processing * [in Photoshop](/notes/warren/10-25-2011/video-tutorial-creating-infrared-composites-aerial-wetlands-imagery) * [or GIMP](/notes/warren/10-27-2011/video-tutorial-creating-false-color-ndvi-aerial-wetlands-imagery) * Using (deprecated) * Command-line processing of single images and rendering of movies using a Python script. Source code is [here]( **Note:** Older versions of this page have been kept at the following wiki page:

Learn more »

Contributors for near-infrared-camera

People who've posted Notes
warren Notes »
adam-griffith Notes »
mathew Notes »
liz Notes »
sara Notes »
Shannon Notes »
gonzoearth Notes »
ncraig Notes »
danbeavers Notes »
patcoyle Notes »
Hudonnoodles Notes »
nedhorning Notes »
MicheleTobias Notes »
hagitkeysar Notes »
pablo Notes »
hunter Notes »
jbreen Notes »
John_Wells Notes »
eustatic Notes »
seankmcginnis Notes »
cfastie Notes »
JBJ Notes »
chrishillcox Notes »
JoshMc Notes »
cindy_excites Notes »
dorncox Notes »
mollydanielsson Notes »
Juan Notes »
PlanetenPaultje Notes »
btbonval Notes »
donblair Notes »
Bob Notes »
aldehyde Notes »
ioan Notes »
pahenry Notes »
wward1400 Notes »
cversek Notes »
nicholas Notes »
ttaylor Notes »
geobduffy Notes »
funkycbj Notes »
djibi2 Notes »
jaluna Notes »
kykytos Notes »
philippg Notes »
jalarid Notes »
jyalarid Notes »
jholmes5 Notes »
bilco1 Notes »
carllipo Notes »
dsittenfeld Notes »
JIWheeler Notes »
cschweik Notes »
radialmind Notes »
cboettner Notes »
Arnaud Notes »
jbest Notes »
bc512 Notes »
bsugar Notes »
fevegal Notes »
Bronwen Notes »
mrrg Notes »
pfoltyn Notes »
ceefoster Notes »
ikerluna Notes »
ajawitz Notes »
luisperezphd Notes »
mark9700 Notes »
IntiE Notes »
Chernabog Notes »
andresc4 Notes »
nicorem Notes »
jtuhtan Notes »
Dongjie Notes »
Thorsten Notes »
kanedan29 Notes »
timmm063 Notes »
nathanathan Notes »
STAndrews00 Notes »
Roolark Notes »
lannutti Notes »
drkatnz Notes »
franknearir Notes »
Tbtouaki Notes »
erget Notes »
fnok Notes »
robharg Notes »
Polygonaltree Notes »
daniedb68 Notes »
gpenzo Notes »
Korartiz Notes »
Albertazzi Notes »
jasperzanco Notes »
geraldmc Notes »
woodcmiami Notes »
fliperbaker Notes »
santizion Notes »
jdburnett Notes »
RoderickRead Notes »
zorn Notes »
PeeBee Notes »
camilochiang Notes »
Jaco Notes »
air_maiden Notes »
Waverider Notes »
ghk Notes »
marktheardvark Notes »
ajchavar Notes »
msfisher Notes »
stevie Notes »
amysoyka Notes »
kendrick90 Notes »
jlspereira Notes »
rway Notes »
Philgib Notes »
nbawawa Notes »
headj Notes »
AerieWorks Notes »
daddyboomalati Notes »
allie01 Notes »
natalie Notes »
lucenk Notes »
noctividus Notes »
Henry0815 Notes »
sabinozootec Notes »
GreenLeaves Notes »
DroneGo Notes »
theowallis Notes »
WhiteRabbit Notes »
cnr437 Notes »
RonGeorge Notes »
amandaf Notes »
paulokemperfilho Notes »
ostman Notes »
aswicks Notes »
alanw Notes »
unsignedint Notes »
dlaflash Notes »
lorati Notes »
kugiel Notes »
airfix4 Notes »
mlvitor Notes »
tagorecaue Notes »
NickJemis Notes »
gretchengehrke Notes »
Mohamed Notes »
PatrickC Notes »
Jeff_Event38 Notes »
aguchosolano Notes »
Monoxyde Notes »
carlozousa Notes »
blkswanpres Notes »
ReLaMa Notes »
davidminn Notes »
arsenix Notes »
bobmathieson Notes »
pswigert Notes »
manattta Notes »
Giovanni1983 Notes »
zeigerpuppy Notes »
limon93 Notes »
bwarzak Notes »
SWeedenWright Notes »
khufkens Notes »
RQ-05 Notes »
Jimo1966 Notes »
clayton Notes »
DFlores6073 Notes »
agustin_castellano Notes »
Fi156 Notes »
ShintoSunrise Notes »
peauproductions Notes »
cooperbreeden Notes »
Marlin Notes »
jimsford Notes »
jmlong Notes »
vdiallonort Notes »
admaltais Notes »
icarito Notes »
CHUMBA Notes »
amck Notes »
Jogomez74 Notes »
GFFchris Notes »
Jakub Notes »
Steven Notes »
rahulrajias Notes »
Claytonb Notes »
JacobNederend Notes »
shinnen Notes »
Parth Notes »
carolccarvalho Notes »
AFairbairn Notes »
Matthew318 Notes »
Gianni_Gadaleta Notes »
talha Notes »
Caca_nkg Notes »
williampasco Notes »
maykef Notes »
Davidkao Notes »
iamkat Notes »
Ajith_Kumar Notes »
imvec Notes »
kaushalsingh Notes »
xose Notes »
suman Notes »
jfd Notes »
MaggPi Notes »
dannysmith Notes »
J_tanna Notes »
ccpandhare Notes »
sujayj Notes »
reversevector Notes »
plam Notes »
jenjimah Notes »
sdepolo Notes »
yoshi1776 Notes »
sid Notes »
kanakiyab Notes »
robotfarms Notes »
plnedestroyer Notes »
tech4gt Notes »
sjmanosalvas Notes »
RehmaanMalik Notes »
fsxskillz Notes »
csteran Notes »
cheneyshreve Notes »
silentsairam Notes »
carlcrott Notes »
Aezys Notes »
CD3000 Notes »
Tasos Notes »
cagiva Notes »
Corymbia Notes »
anothal3v3l23 Notes »
mimiss Notes »
nstarli Notes »
kauemv2 Notes »
ThomasTaufan Notes »