Rotating prism-pair scanning is a conventional method used to achieve large angles with a straight-line configuration. A disadvantage of prism scanners for line scanning is that the sinusoidal scan produces a non-linear image. We use a laser-diode encoding technique to carry out real-time image linearization in a rotating prism-pair scanning system. In this study, we report on the results obtained in a thermal image system. (C) 1997 Elsevier Science Ltd.