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Five new Fluke infrared thermometers take temperature to the next level

Screening for predictive maintenance and general troubleshooting

March 2014

Temperature measurements can be as useful in industrial applications as they are in human medicine as a screening mechanism for potential problems. Where there’s unexpected heat (or lack of it), there could be any number of failures about to occur. Measuring temperature as part of regular predictive maintenance or for general troubleshooting can help you find a problem before it wreaks havoc with your systems.

The challenge is that industrial applications typically present hazards - such as high voltage, high temperatures, rotating or moving equipment, or potentially explosive atmospheres - that make it inadvisable to use a contact temperature probe. In those cases you still need high accuracy, but you don’t want to get too close to the target. Luckily, Fluke has introduced four infrared (IR) thermometers that satisfy both of those requirements.

Fluke’s newest IR thermometers address the broadest possible group of applications with a range of innovative features:

Fluke 572-2 High-Temperature Handheld Infrared Thermometer

The new Fluke 572-2 measures temperatures from -30°C all the way up to 900°C (-22°F to 1652°F), which makes it a good choice if you work in power utility; metal refining; glass, cement, or petrochemical manufacturing; or other high-temperature environments. With its 60:1 distance-to-spot ratio you can use the 572-2 to measure those high temps without getting too close to the measurement target. But you still get fast, accurate temperature measurements.

The straightforward user interface and soft-key menus help you get your measurements quickly, adjusting emissivity manually or automatically through a predefined emissivity table of common materials. You can start data logging (up to 99 data sets) or turn high and low temperature alarms on and off with the push of a button. The 572-2 is also compatible with standard mini-connector K-type thermocouples, so you can view either infrared and thermocouple temperatures on the backlit display and hold the previous reading for up to 20 seconds.

568 Ex Intrinsically Safe Infrared Thermometer

The Fluke 568 Ex IR Thermometer is certified for use in environments where flammable gases and vapor can cause an explosion, such as in petroleum, chemical, oil and gas, or pharmaceutical manufacturing. The 568 EX meets intrinsically safe (IS) certifications from all major safety agencies for Class I Div 1 and Div 2 or Zone 1 and 2 hazardous environments, so you can use it anywhere in the world. It measures from -40°C to 800°C (-40°F to 1472°F) and features a distance-to-spot ratio of 50:1, so you can measure even small objects from farther away.

The IS certification means you don’t have to apply for a hot permit to take temperature measurements in environments where flammable gases and vapors are present. Plus, it comes with a conductive hard-shell carrying case that doesn’t emit static electricity or heat, so you can carry it safely into hazardous areas.

The 568 EX features the same straightforward user interface and soft-key menus as the 572-2: quickly adjust emissivity manually or automatically, save up to 99 data points, and turn alarms on or off. It is also compatible with standard mini-connector K-type thermocouples, so you can view either infrared and thermocouple temperatures on the backlit display.

VT04 Visual IR Thermometer

The newest member of the Fluke Visual IR Thermometer family - the Fluke VT04 Visual IR Thermometer - combines the convenience of a spot thermometer with the visual benefits of an infrared camera, all in a pocket-size tool. Really. It’s about half the size of an average IR camera, and less expensive.

The built in digital camera and Fluke’s exclusive thermal heat map blending allows you to combine digital and thermal images to get a better perspective on exactly where the problem is. The VT04 PyroBlend™ Plus technology delivers 4x sharper images than the Fluke VT02 to help you identify problem spots faster. Combine that with the best in class 28 degree x 28 degree field of view for tight spaces, three powerful alarms, and automated monitoring that captures images at specific time intervals or when a temperature alarm is triggered, and you’re all set for unattended monitoring and troubleshooting stubborn intermittent issues.

You can store up to 10,000 images per Gb on the included SD card, and create professional reports of those results using Fluke SmartView® Analysis and Reporting Software. With its built-in intelligence the VT04 is not only a smart tool, it’s a smart choice, because you don’t have to spend time or money on training.

Fluke 59 MAX and 59 MAX+ infrared thermometers

The new compact Fluke 59 MAX Infrared Thermometer and 59 MAX+ Infrared Thermometer deliver precise laser technology for more accurate and repeatable measurements. And the large, easy-to-read backlit displays make the results easy to read. The thermometers’ lightweight design fits easily in your hand, your toolbox, and your budget. But they’re no lightweights when it comes to on-the-job performance.

These thermometers are a great choice for electrical technicians who need to check temperatures on high-voltage equipment and transformers, as well as standard fuses, wires, insulators, switches, and motors…all from a safe distance. HVAC technicians can use them to check the temperature of furnace exteriors, stream traps, heat exchangers, outlet and inlet air, refrigeration and chiller equipment, AC condensers, and much more. Both models are IP40 rated for extra protection against airborne contaminants.

The 59 MAX offers an 8:1 distance-to-spot ratio and a temperature range from -30°C to 350°C (-22°F to 662°F). The 59 MAX+ increases the distance-to-spot ratio to 10:1 and expands the temperature range to -30°C to 500°C (-22°F to 932°F). Both models are powered by one AA battery and carry a one-year warranty.

Whether you’re dealing with extra-high temperatures, potentially flammable liquids and gases, or you just need a fast, convenient, easy-to-use tool to track down hot and cold problems, there’s a Fluke IR thermometer that fits the job.

The newest Fluke IR thermometers at a glance

  Fluke 572-2 » Fluke 568 EX » Fluke 59 MAX » Fluke 59 MAX+ »
Temperature range -30°C to 900°C
-22°F to 1652°F
-40°C to 800°C
-40°F to 1472°F
-30°C to 350°C (-22°F to 662°F) -30°C to 500°C (-22°F to 932°F)
Distance to spot ratio 60:1 50:1 8:1
(calculated at 90% energy)
(calculated at 90% energy)
Laser sighting Dual laser Single point laser    
Emissivity Digitally adjustable from 0.10 to 1.00 by 0.01 or via built-in table of common materials Digitally adjustable from 0.10 to 1.00 by 0.01 or via built-in table of common materials 0.10 to 1.00
Display resolution 0.1°C (0.1°F)
of reading
0.1°C (0.1°F)
of reading
0.1°C (0.2°F)
Backlight display Two levels, normal and extra bright for darker environments  
Min/max/avg/dif Yes Yes