Thermal cameras are passive sensors that capture the infrared radiation emitted by all objects with a temperature above absolute zero. This type of camera was originally developed as a surveillance and night vision tool for the military, but recently the price has dropped, significantly opening up a broader field of applications. Deploying this type of sensor in vision systems eliminates the illumination problems of normal greyscale and RGB cameras. This survey provides an overview of the current applications of thermal cameras. Applications include animals, agriculture, buildings, gas detection, industrial, and military applications, as well as detection, tracking, and recognition of humans. Moreover, this survey describes the nature of thermal radiation and the technology of thermal cameras.