Global military infrared imaging systems grew 9% in 2018, mainly driven by advances in the U.S., where there was an increase in the defense budget along with pent-up demand for upgrading existing infrared systems. This, along with the development of advanced new infrared detector technologies is expected to drive the military infrared imaging market to $14 billion by 2023.
Awards for the sensor development portion of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) program have been made by the Night Vision & Electronic Sensors Directorate (NVESD).
Argo AI which acquired Princeton Lightwave, has developed a LiDAR system based on InGaAsP Geiger mode Avalanche Photodiodes (GmAPDs) for autonomous vehicles. The GmAPDs, which operate in the SWIR (1.55 µm) spectrum and have single photon sensitivity, have a number of advantages over most LiDARs used in self driving cars which make use of near infrared (900 nm) GaAs lasers and silicon-based detectors. The most important of these advantages is the eye-safe wavelength of SWIR operation.
World infrared imaging markets are poised to enter a new phase. The development of new low-cost uncooled imaging detector cores and competitive pressures are leading to lower prices in a wide range of applications from thermographic inspections to law enforcement. At the same time, smartphone thermal imagers at prices under $200 are making the technology available to consumers who have not previously been exposed to infrared imaging.
Military infrared imaging systems are poised to take a leap forward as advanced new infrared detector technologies become available for the next generation of systems.
Advance Program for Infrared Technologies & Applications conference