Case Study: Back to the basics of Infrared Scanning from a technicians perspective

Richard Bueltel, Energy Services Technician, Missouri River Energy Services


Imaging of electrical panels has been and is one of the most widely used and misused infrared applications.  Checking workmanship, improving quality, increasing reliability, and promoting safety for personnel are the goals of any good program, but are we really using our cameras to the fullest potential when diagnosing issues.  This paper will discuss common mistakes technicians make when providing infrared imaging.  Issues addressed will include: the importance of focus, setting the correct emissivity, image placement, and the importance of opening panels completely, and considerations in diagnosing potential problems. We as thermographers take a wide variety of pictures, but are we really providing our employers and consumers with a quality pictures or are we just snapping pictures?

This presentation focuses on how to improve the overall quality of providing a quality infrared service.   Consumers are willing to pay more for the technician that performs work not just to a minimum level but goes the “extra step” to provide a service that gives them a premium end product.


1. The importance of taking quality pictures
2. The importance of having all camera settings correct.
3. The effects of not completly opening cabinets to take pictures.


Rick Bueltel
Energy Services Technician
Missouri River Energy Services
P.O. Box 88920
Sioux Falls SD 57109-8920