I am not convinced this "projector" does any more than project right to the sensor in a lab. Now if it projected a missile in the sky, that would
rank high on the coolness scale.
For a less scientific explanation of the device, you can view the sales literature here:
In addition, they have some examples of projected images here:
I was more interested in the missile test at the TTR rather than the device itself, not that the device isn't interesting. On the contrary, it is a
1024x1024 array of resistors that get stinking hot (700 deg K). Room temp in Kelvin is around 300 deg K. To put this in perspective, your typical
silicon integrated circuit is designed to work up to 150 deg C, or 425 deg K. Thus they are not simulating something that is hot, but in reality the
imaging array IS hot. It is hot on a pixel by pixel basis, with analog (linear) control, so it can create a thermal image. That is, it has shades of
Back to the missile test at the TTR, the images in the PDF appear to be taken at some elevation, so they were not using the ground based camera system
that the TTR is known for. This could be a night test, or they could have used a long pass filter over the sensor so that heat would be emphasized.
Many infrared sensors will respond to visible light as well. If the goal is to detect an intruder, you would most likely accept any light (visible or
IR) that tickles the sensor. For scientific purposes, that is to detect something that is actually hot like the body of an aircraft or missile plume
rather than an object reflecting light, you would filter the image with a long pass filter. Infrared wavelength is longer than, i.e. lower frequency,
then visible light. The long pass filter would remove the visible spectrum and only pass infrared and lower wavelengths.
If you have a R72 filter, it looks black to the naked eye but a black and white CCD will see right through it since the CCD has sensitivity out to
about 1 um. The R72 passes light from about 700nm to 3um.
Regarding hot surfaces, they follow the black body radiation formula, emitting a peaked curve with long tails for its spectrum. When you see a flame,
you are only viewing a small portion of the light emitted, since most of it is infrared.