Add Night Vision To Your Car: Avoid Suicidal Deer

Adding thermal imaging to your car is a lot easier than you might think... think car stereo plus some light fabrication. Seeing further in the dark? That's priceles

Would you like to see well beyond your high beams at night? Or see thru dust and light fog when you're behind the wheel and there's no where to pull off? We found an easy way to do it: FLIR's PathfindIR.

The PathfindIR is a thermal imager; that means it senses heat, the infrared energy radiated by the objects in front of its lens, and converts it into a visible image you can see.

It really does work in total darkness: hot objects, such as pedestrians and deer grow bright white, colder objects like clouds or concrete embankments grow a lighter grey. Cold objects, say, a can of coke? They look black on the monitor.

The end result is an image of what's coming up 3 to 5x past your high beams, according to FLIR. We found it easy to scan mounted up by our rear view mirror. Just watch for the bright flashes (and the dark ones) in the drive path.

Is a PathfindIR cheap? No.

But we found it fairly painless to install, since any monitor that can accept an regular old NTSCcomposite video signal can display video from the PathfindIR. (PAL models are also available.)

OK, we did mount it on a light bar on the front of the test truck rather than (a more typical) behind the grill mount that would require taking a hole saw to the grill and bolting it to a radiator mount... that certainly cut down on intallation pain!

Tons of video of the PathfindIR in action in the video!