Understanding the FLIR K2: The thermal imaging camera as a solution in fire management
The FLIR K2 is a situational awareness TIC made by Teledyne FLIR systems: the K2 is one of the few that is “battle hardened” or designed to endure the rigors of firefighting
It is well insulated, has a larger display screen, and is a pistol grip design which many firefighters find as a more natural and more ergonomic design for ease of use.
It’s Field of View is one of the largest on the market for this category of TIC’s: it is 35×47 which equates to 35 degrees vertically and 47 degrees horizontally. T
his provides a larger area for decision making when viewing the fireground and when flipped sideways or what we call the “gangster grip” a firefighter is able to see the ceiling and the floor in one view in a 9′ tall hallway.
The resolution of this model is low coming in at 19,200 pixels but it has MSX which is where FLIR overlays a digital image and a thermal image creating a much sharper image. However, this only benefits the end user if there is visible light.
The temperature modes or gains of the FLIR K2 are high and low sensitivity (or dual gain)
The TIC starts off in High Sensitivity which equates to a temperature range of zero degrees Fahrenheit up to 302 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the TIC detects a certain amount of heat above 302 Degrees Fahrenheit within the immediate field of view the detector switches to Low Sensitivity.
It can take 3-5 seconds for the TIC to switch over.
To overcome this delay, we locked our models in low sensitivity (which disables high sensitivity).
This is only to be done if the device is being used on the fireground regularly.