How do LED Infrared lights work?
An infrared flashlight has many tactical purposes, but many find it hard to explain how it actually works. All that we really know is that Infrared light cannot be seen with the naked eye unless it is used with a Night Vision Device. Infrared has quickly become a must for many government agencies including the FBI, Border Patrol, and many Police Departments. Most Infrared lights use special LED’s making them quite expensive. How do these IR Flashlights work?
Infrared is emitted in wavelengths that are beyond the human visible range. Humans can only see certain wavelengths in what is known as the electromagnetic spectrum. The light that can be seen by the human eye is referred to as visible light. 490(THz) is usually the lowest frequency visible and 750nm is the longest wavelength visible to the human eye. This is where Infrared starts, any light beyond these dimensions will fall under Infrared. When creating an IR light, many flashlight companies design a LED that is beyond the Visible Light spectrum of the human eye. How would anyone benefit from an IR flashlight if it is not visible?
If you were to have an Infrared(IR) flashlight and shine it in the darkness it would not be seen, unless you have Night Vision/Infrared Equipment also know as a Night Vision Device(NVD). This would allow you to see in the dark without being detected. This is one of the main reasons many police departments and other government agencies use (IR) Flashlights and lenses. IR Flashlights have been used to record many criminals during sting operations, they are now a necessity for law enforcement. Another great use for IR flashlights is for hunting purposes. With an IR flashlight and the right Night Vision Device, you would be able to see many animals at a close distance without being detected. Many Flashlight companies like Fenix have created top tier IR Flashlights including the Fenix TK25IR.
There are many things to take into consideration when choosing the right IR Flashlight. First, you want to make sure that you have a compatible Night Vision Device or (NVD). Not all NVD’s are compatible with IR Flashlights simply because they operate at different wavelengths. Most flashlight companies design IR flashlights between 730nm to 1200nm. This is why it is important to find an NVD that is compatible with the wavelength of the IR flashlight that your purchase.