Dissemination of IT for the Promotion of Materials Science (DoITPoMS)

DoITPoMS Teaching & Learning Packages Pyroelectric Materials Application of a Pyroelectric-Infrared detection

Application of a Pyroelectric-Infrared detection

There are problems with this situation. As discussed in the previous section, there is the possibility of an indirect effect, with the thermal expansion of the detector causing a polarisation to develop by piezoelectricity. This produces ‘noise’ of a sort, and can mask the signal generated by the target object. There is also the possibility of external stresses being applied. This is a problem, as it means the detector does not work as well as it should. These problems are typically counteracted by the use of a second pyroelectric component, i.e. a reference element.

See below:

The use of two pyroelectric plates to cancel out the effects of thermal stress