Public Lab Wiki documentation


2,604 views | Last edited by warren over 2 years ago | #7558

The Infragram is an affordable, open source multispectral camera platform for measuring plant health.

Developed collaboratively by the Public Lab community, it intended for home gardeners, hikers, makers, farmers, amateur scientists, teachers, artists, and anyone curious about the secret lives of plants!

The Infragram Kickstarter video, a great introduction to the project.

Quick links

Infragram kit types

You can order pre-modified webcam or in the Public Lab store, or you can modify a camera yourself with a filter pack. Read more about the Infragram Point & Shoot camera here


Purpose Category Status Author Time Difficulty Replications
Raspberry + NoIR cam + Sensors to detect water stress of the plants during their growing - - @LaPa - - 0 replications: Try it »
Video tutorial: Creating false-color NDVI with aerial wetlands imagery - - @warren - - 0 replications: Try it »
Conversion of 4k sport camera for NDVI analysis with UAVs - - @azaelb - - 0 replications: Try it »
Mobius NDVI - - @cfastie - - 0 replications: Try it »
Mobius non-fish eye and small lifter wrapup - - @patcoyle - - 0 replications: Try it »
Mobius IR conversion - - @cfastie - - 0 replications: Try it »
Infragram Point and Shoot Starting Instructions - - @abdul 1hr medium 0 replications: Try it »
Mobius non-fish-eye lens conversion - - @patcoyle - - 0 replications: Try it »
Video tutorial: Creating infrared composites of aerial wetlands imagery - - @warren - - 0 replications: Try it »

Add an activity  or request an activity guide you don't see listed

Activities should include a materials list, costs and a step-by-step guide to construction with photos. Learn what makes a good activity here.

Getting started

So you have an Infragram camera, or a filter kit, and you want to start analyzing plant health? After this page, the first place to look for answers is Public Lab's infrared photography discussion list, which you can sign up for in the left-hand column. There are plenty of other DIY infrared photographers, from novices to experts, willing to offer advice and help troubleshoot.

Converting cameras

The question to start with is whether you can capture all the channels you need for your research question with a single converted camera or whether you should use a dual camera rig with one converted camera and one unconverted. That choice plays out in terms of what filter (blue or red) to use for converting your camera.

Check out this list of cameras, detailing how to convert some and collecting information on which cameras work and which don't:

Here's a link to a great video on converting a camera using PL's filter kit:

Please share your experiences and post additional cameras to this list!

White balance

We've learned that careful white balancing of your converted Infragram camera is essential for good NDVI images. Learn how in this short video and read in depth on the topic in research by Chris Fastie. There is also a wiki page on the subject at


Should you use a RED or BLUE filter?

Early research by Public Lab contributors led to a blue filter technique for making Infragram cameras. But recent research on has shown that red filters work better -- and on a wider range of cameras. Blue filters did not work on most CMOS cameras, especially cheaper webcams. By the beginning of the new year the Filter Kits will ship with red filters -- specifically the Rosco #19 "Fire" filter as well as the blue filter #2007.

Blue filters

Currently the Infragram DIY Filter Kit ships with two different filters. This is because our research on which filter works best has evolved over time, but until recently we believed that the #2007 was easier to use because it transmits more light, while the #74 transmits enough to get good results if you are careful with ISO and shutter speed. We think that the #74 should produce a more pure NIR channel.

Coding Support

For those who use the webcam and have a Python interpreter, there are some image processing codes available at Python Webcam Codes.

Give or get help

Here are some resources to get help converting or using your Infragram camera. Keep in mind that we are a peer driven community and we encourage everyone to give as well as receive assistance and support!

Title Author Updated Likes
I need a help I'm doing a research project on NVDI processes @camiloreyes about 2 years ago
AstroPlant RPi sensory system @Sidney_AstroPlant about 2 years ago
"Test images" for multispectral image processing @warren about 2 years ago
Transmission & other related information of the Red Filter @suman over 2 years ago
I would like to know why near infared imaging works, and what it does. @kiramac over 2 years ago
GoPro Hero HD first version- Making full spectrum( Removing IR filter) @suman over 2 years ago
Can you process multiple images at the same time? @JonathanM32 over 2 years ago
PublicLab Mobius calibration @dbehr almost 3 years ago
Video Infragram @jfd almost 3 years ago
Question infragram kit @marfisistemidroni almost 3 years ago
What is the ideal white balance for the Infragam Point and Shoot? @abdul almost 3 years ago
Can anyone help me troubleshoot my NDVI imagery? @abdul almost 3 years ago
How to process images using a mobius with an IR lens? @miguel_rosas almost 3 years ago
MobiusActionCam vs S100 @ashwinvasudevan almost 3 years ago
what are the requirements of a camera for Filter replacement and NDVI imaging? @Ajith_Kumar almost 3 years ago
loading the proper camera driver for the DSK webcam @Winter almost 3 years ago
Correct Config. File & Trobule shooting2 @will123 almost 3 years ago
Don't know how to use DIY Plant Analysis Webcam @Barabba33 about 3 years ago
Infragram Point and Shoot Plant Cam @alexrfholland about 3 years ago
Question: Infragram point & shoot image @ino over 3 years ago
How can one Infragram photo produce different NDVI results? @cfastie almost 4 years ago
Question: how to calculate NDVI @rajsan1108 about 4 years ago
What is the correct interpretation for the NDVI infragram color scale? @DuvTorres over 4 years ago
Question: retrieving true color image from infragram images @brooksdr about 5 years ago
Show more

Ask a question  or help answer future questions on this topic

When describing your question or answer, please include details of the equipment and process you are using as described here for Infragram photos .


Where are people doing Infragram work? This map will show some projects and posts by location:


The Infragram camera was originally developed by Public Lab contributors to assess damage to wetlands in the wake of the BP oil spill; but it's also a simple, easy-to-modify, open-source hardware and software tool that anyone who's curious about plant physiology and health can use. You can go back and read through much of this work by reading research notes tagged with 'near-infrared-camera' and the most recent work on the Infragram technique by looking for the tag 'infragram'.


Vineyards, large farms, and NASA all use near-infrared photography for assessment, usually by mounting expensive sensors on airplanes and satellites. Infragram brings this technology to average citizens, enabling them to monitor their environment through quantifiable, citizen-generated data.


Just as photography was instrumental to the rise of credible print journalism, DIY data collection technologies like Infragram set out to democratize and improve reporting about environmental impacts. By creating a low-cost camera and working with farmers and environmental activists, we hope to explore grassroots uses for this kind of technology.

What exactly is an Infragram camera?

The Kickstarter project offered a few different versions:

DIY Filter Pack: This is just a piece of "superblue" filter which you can use to turn your webcam or cheap point-and-shoot into an infrared camera. The filter allows you to take an infrared photo in the "red" channel of your camera, and a visible image in the "blue" channel. The Public Lab kit comes with a white balance card and instructions on how install your filter -- it's pretty easy!
Infragram Webcam At one-twentieth the cost of normally priced consumer infrared cameras, this cheap but flexible device is designed for plugging directly into your laptop or integrating into other projects. It's also ideal for a Raspberry Pi, if you want to take it outdoors, do timelapse photography, or write scripts to control your camera. We're getting a company to fit 1000 standard webcams with infrablue filters, and shipping them as a bare circuit board with a USB cable - like an Arduino. You can make one of these yourself, although it seems that not all webcams work, so be aware!
Infragram Point & Shoot: This is a straightforward, if basic, point-and-shoot camera which we're getting a factory to pre-convert with infrablue filters: you can simply take photos as you normally would, then upload them to our free and open-source web app to quickly and easily get a variety of composite images and analyses (the site is currently in beta with minimal initial features). This isn't an SLR or even a particularly fully featured camera -- it likely won't have an LCD screen and may be "rebranded" with a Public Lab sticker -- but it's the new filter we've put inside which counts.

"The name "Infragram" comes from Infrared Photogrammetry, the use of photography to create spacialized and quantified data. When NASA started using this technique on the Landsat satellites in the 1970's and 80's, each camera was custom-built for the purpose. Now, consumer cameras are so advanced that even a five year old point and shoot can generate excellent data with nothing more than a change of the filters and calibration through the Infragram site."-- Mathew Lippincott, Public Lab

"We're excited that Public Laboratory is developing a low-cost infrared camera which will help us track the success of wetland restoration projects in the Gulf Region--as well as help us track pollution. The Gulf Restoration Network has been using the aerial monitoring techniques that Public Lab developed, so having the infrared camera available to put on the balloon and kite rig will only expand the applications of that technology as well as add value to airplane monitoring flights that help us watchdog the oil industry in the Gulf." -- Scott Eustis, M.S., Gulf Restoration Network

More information

The Public Lab community has been building up a knowledge base in DIY infrared imaging for years. To join in, check out these pages:

  • Infrared image processing, specifically how to represent information that we can't see as images that we can see:
  • The history of the project -- the images below depict other prototypes that were created by our community over the years. If you are interested in the story of how this project got started, check out more early prototypes and experiments on this page:



Infragram instructions and graphics

Digital files for the filter pack envelope (including logo) and instructions:




Sketchup model for the "filter switch" graphic: filter-switch.skp


Datasheet for Infragram Webcam: infragram-webcam-new-old-diagram.pdf

Focal length of the camera:3.27mm. Chip sensor size for the camera: Sensor:ov2643,SIZE:1/4"