Heat3D - Infrared U-value Measurement

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Heat3D is an innovative mobile app which allows you to precisely measure heat flow and U-values of building elements using a low-cost, quick and non-invasive method. Heat3D is designed to work on iPhones and iPads and uses a portable thermal camera to obtain results in a matter of hours as opposed to days or weeks using traditional techniques. The rapid nature of the measurement enables quantified U-values that are more accurate than manual calculation methods.

The Heat3D iOS app uses Apple ARKit to detect room features such as walls, floors and ceilings and construct a 3D model. When combined with a FLIR portable camera, infrared thermal images are projected on to the 3D model showing the heat signature through each surface. Quantitative infrared thermography is used to calculate the heat loss through these surfaces and, using temperature sensors, a U-value is calculated and presented on the device.

Quick and Easy
The fast and intuitive app allow measurements to be carried out with minimal training and supervision.

Mobile Based
Works on wide range of iPhones and iPads and doesn’t need lots of bulky additional equipment to be carried to site.

Low Cost
Only requires a portable thermal camera and is significantly more affordable than traditional techniques that use expensive specialist equipment.

3D Model
The app produces a 3D model of the room being surveyed allowing you to inspect areas of interest later and quantify improvements.

Energy Costs
Energy, running costs and CO2 emissions of the heat loss area being measured which allows cost savings and RoI to be determined after improvements have been made.

Cloud Based
All measurement and survey data are saved into the cloud.

Heat3D is the product of years of research and real-world testing into quantitative infrared thermography techniques and has been developed in conjunction with Electric Pocket and the University of Salford.

Heat3D App
Heat3D is an iOS app designed to work on both iPhones and iPads with an A9 on better processor and a Lightning connector. It uses Apple ARKit to detect features of a room as well as an external FLIR infrared camera to enable thermal images to be captured.

Apple ARKit is an augmented reality framework that uses the device’s camera and sensors to detect horizontal planes such as floors and walls as well as the distance from them. The Heat3D app uses ARKit to create a 3D model of the space and is able to track its position within the room using a process known as visual inertial odometry.

The room boundaries and captured thermal imagery are projected onscreen in an augmented way to provide an immersive experience that enables the operator to inspect the thermal properties of the building fabric both in real-time and at a later date.

Underlying Physics
The Heat3D solution uses a quantitative infrared thermography (IRT) method in its calculation of heat flux through a surface. With the advent of cheaper thermal imaging camera options combined with extensive development work and refinement in the ability to measure the underlying temperature and heat flux components accurately, Heat3D establishes a low-cost, quick and non-invasive alternative method to measuring U-values.

Output Results
Once a survey is complete, the Heat3D app will produce a heat flux density (Q) for every IR pixel of the wall being modelled. A thermal transmittance (U-value) is presented based on the calculated convective heat transfer and radiative heat transfer parts at each location, and it is also possible to display the energy cost of the heat going through the wall based on the cost per Kw of heat energy. All surveys are saved both locally to the device and to a cloud-based server.

Insulation Requirements
Understand baseline performance and better target investment in insulation upgrades.

As-Built Performance Measurement
Check that the actual performance meets the designed performance. Identify poor installations and workmanship.

Retrofit Performance Improvement
Determine the true energy, running cost and CO2 savings delivered by improvements.

Quality Assurance
Measure during works and before completion to check that desired outcomes are being achieved. Conduct quality assurance testing and establish a culture of accountability.

Reduced Remedial Work
Save time, costs and improve quality by identifying issues early and reducing late-stage remedial action.

BTS involves like minded individuals and organisations in the development of new building testing technologies. If you wish to know more, are interested in our vision, or believe we could help your organisation, please get in touch.

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