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The core of a fibrescope is made of high purity glass; this is clad in an outer material to prevent light from leaking away, with a protective plastic coating providing protection from damage. This fibre-optic bundle is completely flexible and provides high-resolution imagery. In fact, fibrescopes have been used to reach difficult- to-reach places as diverse as complicated door locks and the inside of the human body.

However, while the fibrescope might have been developed mainly to allow doctors to see inside the body without making a large incision, they’ve become equally useful for conducting industrial inspections.

Fibrescopes are excellent for use in such conditions since they are incredibly tough. The use of glass might make such a product sound fragile, but the manufacturing process is entirely different, with glass fibre reaching a theoretical maximum tensile strength of about 2 million pounds per square inch.

This means that they can be sent to perform a visual inspection of remote areas that couldn’t be accessed by a man, and you won’t need to worry about damage occurring. Video can be received in real-time, and the availability of articulating, non-articulating, or semi-rigid based designs means that users will have the opportunity to remotely move the lens of the fibrescope.


Fibrescopes are ideal for getting bright images in inside tight, confined spaces

While something like a telescopic pole camera is ideal for inspecting more open areas, fibrescopes are particularly advantageous if you need to capture bright images inside tight, confined spaces which don’t receive a lot of, or any, light. The fibrescope’s modest diameter means that they can be fitted through extremely small openings, with some small diameter fibrescopes reaching just 0.64 mm, and, unlike a rigid borescope, their length and flexibility allows them to reach areas that need to be accessed via a series of bends. It is also possible to have them connected to CCTV systems and other photographic equipment.

Common uses include:

  • Checking inside fine diameter pipework for damage or blockages.
  • Inspecting the inside of mechanical devices, such as engines.
  • Checking inside small wall spaces.

Fibrescopes are still pieces of speciality equipment, but their benefits are ensuring that their use becomes ever more widespread.

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