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Farm Uses For Infrared Scanning
Infrared scanning has many potential uses on farms, says Brian Kumer, Peoria, Ill., who runs one of the country's only commercial scanning services in a rural area.
  Kumer takes his $30,000 infrared scanner out to farms and homes to take "pictures" of various objects. Then he uses computer software back at his office to interpret what the scanner saw. He advertises mostly in local newspapers and charges $75 per hour.
  Some potential farm uses include: Pointing the scanner at a metal grain bin to tell exactly how high the grain is in it. He can also scan tanks filled with various fluids. For example, he can read the levels of anhydrous and LP gas in tanks. He can also scan bearings and other moving parts and tell if any are running hot. The scanner will even spot electrical shorts that could cause problems if they don't get corrected.
  According to Kumer, the biggest challenge in running an infrared scanning service is educating people on the benefits. "Most people don't know anything about how infrared scanning works or what it can do for them," he says.
  "The main part of my business is doing home energy ratings, in which I use the infrared scanner and do a blower door test. The scanner can verify insulation levels and determine how effective the insulation is. There's a big difference in the insulating value of different types of insulation. For an average home I charge $300 to $500 to do an infrared scan and door blower test."
  The infrared scanner can also be used on ceilings to determine if water is leaking into the insulation. "The scanner can detect when water goes through a roof and contacts drywall, because as the water contacts the drywall it starts to evaporate. The evaporation process pulls heat off the drywall, which causes a temperature difference that the scanner picks up."
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Brian Kumer, 2215 W. Willow Knoll, Suite 102, Peoria, Ill. 61614 (ph 309 693-0617).

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2002 - Volume #26, Issue #6