The maritime environment presents some of the most difficult imaging conditions possible. Conventional low-light or image intensified cameras (green night vision scopes) rely on small amounts of light to produce an image. In many cases, the maritime environment is cluttered with bright lights on the shoreline, which presents a challenging scene for image intensifiers.
Bright lights in the distance can cause a conventional night vision scope to bloom, making it hard to see targets of interest. And without any light, they don’t perform at all. Conversely, the maritime environment is complimentary to thermal camera technology since you are looking for a warm target against a cool uniform scene.
FLIR thermal cameras outperform low cost night vision systems for long range detection and search and rescue, because people and machines can’t hide their heat.