Radiant Infrared Heaters


radiant heaters

Big Chief can approach Infrared Heating applications with a wider choice of heat sources than most manufacturers or suppliers. Operating in the medium-wave length range, energy produced by Big Chief infrared heat products can be used for virtually any heating, drying and curing process. Temperatures can be accurately controlled and matched to the ideal absorption characteristics of the material being heated. Much information is presented in the Engineering and Technical Section on how to apply infrared heat. Big Chief has vast experience and can provide extensive assistance in designing a new, or retrofitting an existing infrared heating system.

Big Chief Infrared Heaters are used in many industrial and commercial applications, such as:

Paint Drying

Vacuum Forming


Preheating or Vulcanizing Rubber


Plastic Welding

Preheating Welding Seams

Resin Curing

Shrink Packaging

Heat Set Synthetic Fibers and Fabric

Paper Pulp Drying

Powder Coating

Adhesive Activation


Print Drying

Semiconductor Wafer Preheating and Drying

Drying of Glazing on Ceramic Tiles

Spot Comfort Heating

Environmental Chambers



Food Service Equipment

Water and Solvent Evaporation

Tempering Layered Glass

Leather Production

Baking and Browning Food Products


FP Flat Panel Infrared Heaters

radiant heatersFP Flat Panel Infrared Heaters are very efficient infrared heat sources in that as much as 80% of the applied energy is converted into radiant energy. Typical ratings are 10-15 watts per square inch. The FP Flat Panel Infrared Heater’s advantage versus radiant elements such as quartz tube, metal sheath tubular and ceramic is the complete, wide area, uniform coverage provided. A broad range of standard sizes and ratings can form the modular base of a radiant heating system. Custom sizes and ratings can also be designed for special or unique applications. The standard material, Quartz Cloth, a cleanable Black Glass and extra-durable Stainless Steel emitter surfaces are available. Because of the rugged construction, FP Infrared Heaters are resistant to shock and vibration. No reflectors are required, eliminating maintenance requirements. Without insulation, the overall thickness is 1-1/2″ – with insulation, 3″. Thermowells can be installed near the surface for precise control of the sheath temperature. By controlling the sheath temperature, the wavelength can be matched to the specific absorption characteristics of the material being heated.


Quartz Cloth, Black High Temperature Glass or Stainless Steel Emitter Surfaces.
Quartz Cloth and Stainless Steel surfaces have a black, high emissivity coating.
Stainless Steel Frame for continuous high temperature operation.
Minimum Frame dimensions allow little interruption in the radiant heat pattern
when two or more panels are mounted together. 5/16″ of frame overlaps the
emitter’s surface.
Refractory Board with Channels for mounting Resistance Helix.
1-1/2″ is standard thickness; 3″ thick units include High Temperature Insulation.
1/4-20 x 1″ long Stainless Steel Screw Terminals. Standard position of terminals
depend on rating of heater. Terminal enclosure available.
10-32 Mounting Studs located in the corners and along the edge as required or
as specified.
Minimum Width – 4″; Maximum width – 24″.
Minimum Length – 6″: Maximum length – 48″.
Standard 5″ long, .24″ I.D. quartz tube thermowell installed from the side slightly
off center of the panel. Special thermowells can be supplied.
Type K Thermocouple to monitor or control emitter surface temperature –
ordered separately.

Average Emitter Surface Temperatures:

Watts/Square Inch Quartz Cloth Surface Glass Surface Stainless Steel Surface
10 1100°F (593°C) 1000°F (538°C) 1200°F (649°C)
15 1400°F (760°C) 1200°F (649°C) 1400°F (760°C)
20 1650°F (900°C) 1300°F (704°C) 1600°F (872°C)
25 1800°F (983°C)
An FP Panel Heater, positioned vertically, is energized in 70°F (21°C) ambient air. A Type K thermocouple is installed in a thermowell in the standard position next to the resistance element. A temperature control used in conjunction with the sensor and a solid state output will maintain the constant temperature required for the maximum radiant energy transfer to the process. This will also compensate for ambient temperature changes and voltage fluctuations.

Black Body Ceramic Infrared Heaters

radiant heaters An efficient heat source for many industrial and commercial applications, the Black Body and Chameleon Ceramic Infrared Heater is available in an array of sizes and modules. Underwriter’s Laboratories component recognition is available on many of the items shown. Parabolic or flat profiles, square, rectangular or round shapes, mounted in housings or panels, Black Body and Chameleon Ceramic Heaters can easily be installed and arranged to produce heat patterns limited only by the imagination of the designer.
Efficiently emits radiant energy
Corrosion and oxidation resistant
Peak energy wave length of 3-5 microns
Modular panels available
Modules and panels can be zoned
Virtually no maintenance required
Up to 10,000 hours operating life
Available with type J or type K thermocouple
6 inch ceramic bead insulated leads
Wattage tolerance +/-5%
Chameleon color changes from yellow to
brown when processing temperatures are reached


Wattage-Surface Temperature Chart
Wattage 1000 650 400 500 325
Average Surface Temperature 750°C 1380°F 630°C 1165°F 510°C 950°F 750°C 1380°F 630°C 1165°F
Maximum Allowable Surface Temperature 800°C 1470°F 700°C 1290°F 565°C 1050°F 800°C 1470°F 700°C 1290°F
Peak Wave Length (m) 2.9 3.2 3.7 2.9 3.2
The maximum efficiency of the Black Body Ceramic Infrared Heater converts almost every watt of applied energy into radiant energy. Convection losses are minimal. Sheath temperatures can be controlled and the process can be zoned with a built-in thermocouple. The wavelength can be matched to specific absorption characteristics of the material being heated. Heat losses and changes in process requirements can also be compensated for.
Wattage Voltage X
1000 220/230 9-5/8″
1000 480 9-5/8″
650 220/230 9-5/8″
650 120 9-5/8″
650 480 9-5/8″
400 220/230 9-5/8″
500 220/230 4-3/4″
325 220/230 4-3/4″
200 120 2-3/8″

* Flat Profile

EL Square Element with Flat Profile

Black Body Ceramic Infrared Heater with Holes
5/16″ (8mm) holes throughout surface is practical for radiant heating applications with cooling requirements or where a 8-7/8″ x 12-1/8″ (225mm x 308mm) combination radiant/convective heat source is needed. Air blown through the surface would provide cooling or convection heat transfer. 4″ ceramic insulated lead wires are provided. The standard rating is 1500W, 240V, at 14 watts/square inch.


Housings for “A” Series Elements

Housings are for one or combinations of A-1 Series Black Body Ceramic Heaters. Other lengths and combinations are available – consult factory.

Housings include mounting bolts, reflectors, ceramic terminal blocks and pre-wired insulated bus.

Mounting Bolt
10″ 8-1/2″
19-7/8″ 18-3/8″
29-3/4″ 28-1/4″
39-1/2″ 38″
49-3/8″ 47-7/8″

Typical Installations

D-1-500 Round Element with Flat Profile

Modular Panels

Modular design allows panels to be grouped for processing larger areas
The light weight of the individual panels makes installation easy
Placement of individual units permit uniform radiant heat pattern
Full 1 inch insulation reduces surface heat loss and lower ambient wiring temeratue.
Louvered terminal cover maintains low terminal area temperatue
Sturdy panel construction
Housing is supplied with terminal cover and required ceramic terminal blocks
ELF-6 can be wired for 240V 1 phase, 240V 3 phase, 480V 1 phase or 480V 3 phase. ELF-9 can be wired for 240V 1 phase or 3 phase
16-5/8″ 11-3/8″ 4-3/4″
16-5/8″ 16-3/4″ 4-3/4″
Black Body Ceramic Infrared Heaters are sold separately and are mounted and wired at the installation.

Special sized and rated panels can be built using any size and combination of heaters to match specific areas or processes.

Chameleon Ceramic Infrared Heaters

Big Chief Chameleon Ceramic Infrared Heaters are available in many of the standard sizes and ratings as Big Chief Black Body Ceramic Heaters. The feature is a unique coloring that changes from yellow to brown when processing temperature ranges are reached. This provides a visual indication that a heater is operating. In large radiant panels or ovens, where hundreds of heaters might be installed, it is possible to determine items not working by the color of each element. If an item has returned to the original yellow color, replacement is necessary. A-1 Chameleon elements can be mounted in any of the “A” Series housings, or can be used in custom panels.

Wattage Voltage X
1000 220/230 9-5/8″
650 220/230 9-5/8″
500 220/230 4-3/4″
325 220/230 4-3/4″

Aluminized Steel Reflector

Stand-Off Mounting Bracket
Terminal Blocks