Thermal Goggles?


March 19, 2007, 08:06 PM
I was hoping somebody here could assist with an argument I had with a friend.

We were watching Mythbusters last week, which was the Hindenberg Myth. When Adam and Jamie are watching their models burn, they're looking at what my friend calls the "Predator-style thermal camera".

My friend claims that they're not available to the public, or if they are, it's far more expensive than standard night vision goggles.

Can you (legally) get thermal goggles or monocular with the same vision mode as the Mythbusters camera, and how much are they compared to night vision?

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March 19, 2007, 10:39 PM
I use thermal imaging cameras all the time at work.

Some of them are very expensive. Some are not. Haven't seen any goggles, but I haven't looked either.


Derek Zeanah
March 19, 2007, 10:44 PM
I've seen some nice Elcan sights. Something like $11,000 2 years ago though. Sexy as hell though, and available if you want to pay the price. IIRC it was a mix of thermal and passive amplification though, not just thermal.

Derek Zeanah
March 19, 2007, 10:49 PM
Here you go ( Google's top hits showed prices of around $13,000 from dealers that only want to deal with law enforcement and military. I'd guess you can find one for around that price if you dig enough.

Gen3 might vision is still quite a bit cheaper though.

March 20, 2007, 01:18 PM
Thanks muchly.

March 20, 2007, 07:52 PM
Civilians can buy thermal imagers, the one they are using was most likely one similar to what fire departments use. You can also bet that they borrowed it from the local PD. They are expensive, and most dealers will not sell to civilians because of the potential liability of the individual selling/taking it out of the country. It just is not worth the hassles with the State Dept and Customs.

But high sensitivity and long range thermals (or weapon sights) are not available for sales to civilians anywhere I have seen. We have a bit of a time getting a weapon sight when we order them for agencies.

March 21, 2007, 04:39 PM
Some US-made thermals are legally exportable, as are the innards that make them work.

If a state-side dealer won't scratch your itch, perhaps you can get a furriner to sell you a Sagem Lutis for your weapon. The French will sell to anybody with cash.

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