- This paper reviews applications of infrared thermal signature techniques to detection of faults and defects on electronics boards. Issues essential to the successful application of infrared techniques to electronics manufacturing and circuit card maintenance are investigated. These issues include basic know-how such as scanning time interval and screening variables; a description of the types of defects and faults these methods have been used to detect; and a comparison of infrared thermal imaging and other detection means such as X-ray and functional testers. The paper concludes with a summary of potential problems and remedies. Future directions include design for infrared diagnosis and development of integrated testing techniques for detection and root-cause analysis. 2014 Copyright SPIE.