By Emily Lehmann
If you’re feeling a bit under the weather, you might bring your hand to your forehead and take note of your temperature. Just like your mama used to do.
Running a high temperature is an age-old giveaway that you’re sick with a fever and that you better check in with your doc or stay at home in your PJs.
Like your body heat is a sign of a fever, deep down at a cellular level, it can also be an indicator of other serious illnesses and diseases. Cancer is one example because cancer cells are typically higher in temperature than healthy cells.
We’ve come up with a hot new thermal mapping and 3D imaging technology called HeatWave that could one day be used by health professionals to detect and monitor certain cancers.
HeatWave could be used for early detection and monitoring of injury and disease.
A key advantage of thermal scanning is that it’s radiation-free, reducing risks to patients imposed by other forms of tomography and repeat scans can be undertaken after shorter periods of time.
While there are other thermal scanning technologies out there being used by health professionals, unlike HeatWave, they are only capable of producing 2D images.
This means that repeat images need to be taken at exactly the same angle to achieve an accurate picture of changes to the area of the body. They are also difficult and require years of practice and expertise – something which HeatWave overcomes.
The HeatWave device
Early cancer detection is just one of the many great applications envisaged for the technology and we’ve just won an award for it.
HeatWave took home the national research and development award at the iAwards on Friday night, recognised as a cutting edge innovation.
The handheld mobile technology can generate precise 3D models of objects or scenes, overlaid with accurate temperature information in real time.
Consisting of a 3D camera and thermal sensors, HeatWave can be literally waved around objects and spaces to collect data. This data is then turned into high-resolution 3D images.
Thermal imaging is growing rapidly and HeatWave is expected to have a range of applications in industries including energy, construction, manufacturing, agriculture and emergency services.
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