The main objective of this paper is to produce an applications-oriented review covering infrared techniques and devices. At the beginning infrared systems fundamentals are presented with emphasis on thermal emission, scene radiation and contrast, cooling techniques, and optics. Special attention is focused on night vision and thermal imaging concepts. Next section concentrates shortly on selected infrared systems and is arranged in order to increase complexity; from image intensifier systems, thermal imaging systems, to space-based systems. In this section are also described active and passive smart weapon seekers. Finally, other important infrared techniques and devices are shortly described, among them being: non-contact thermometers, radiometers, LIDAR, and infrared gas sensors.