A fast and easy method for fault detection in antenna arrays using infrared thermography is presented. A thin, minimally perturbing, microwave absorption screen made of carbon loaded polymer is kept close in front of the faulty array. Electromagnetic waves falling on the screen increase its temperature. This temperature profile on the screen is identical to electric field intensity profile at the screen location. There is no temperature rise observed on the screen corresponding to non-radiating (faulty) elements and hence can be easily detected by IR thermography. The array input power is modulated at a low frequency which permits thermography to detect even weak fields. It also improves the resolution of thermal images. The power fed to the array is only 30 dBm. In order to show the utility of this technique, an example of 14 GHz 4 × 4 patch antenna array is given. The simulations are carried in CST Microwave Studio 2013. A good agreement between simulation and experimental results is observed. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.