User can quickly spot potential problems with plant or machinery.

A hand-held infrared thermal imager that can instantly diagnose major problems in plant or machinery has been launched by Testo.

Priced from £3,549 (plus VAT), the Testo 880 is a preventative tool for anyone responsible for stopping vital equipment breaking down. In an electrical installation, for example, the Testo 880 can pick up irregular overheating or "hot spots" that could prompt a shutdown or wear and tear in mechanical components.

The Testo 880 translates the heat given off by any object, known as infrared radiation, into high definition thermal images on its viewing screen. The Testo 880-3 includes a digital camera that can show the thermal image alongside a digital image of the object in question, which can then be recorded and stored.

High quality optics and innovative electronics mean that even the smallest temperature differences can be detected and a defect quickly identified.

The hand-held unit has a trigger key for fast freezing and recording of infrared and digital images, a five-way joystick for fast menu navigation and a large crystal clear screen. Up to 1,000 images can be stored or offloaded to a computer via a USB connection.

Specific features include IR-lens protection glass for dusty environments, a shock- absorbing robust housing and a minimum focus distance of 10cm.

The Testo 880 is also available in four kits. The top-of-the-range 880-3 model includes an integral digital camera, among other additional features. The Testo 880-3 Professional Set, which includes a number of accessories such as a telephoto lens, costs less than £7,000, including VAT.

Testo managing director Tom Tonkins explains:
"We have developed a sophisticated, competitively priced product aimed at improving the monitoring and maintenance of plant and equipment.

"Testo is known for its considerable expertise as a manufacturer of test and measurement instrumentation and the thermal imager range grew out of our understanding of the marketplace. No-one else offers a thermal imager with an in-built digital camera at this price."

June 2008

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