The problem with these projects is that making "stuff" is really expensive. You have parts cost, manufacturing costs, advertising, travel, trade shows, overhead (insurance, utilities, etc). not to mention paying the people who are working on the project.
Most people who do not run a business in the industry in question do not understand all these costs... so they see a commercial product that sells for $100 and they think "hell, I can make that for $50! Then I can sell mine for $90 and make a ton of money!". But they don't know that the $100 product is sold by the manufacturer for $40, and the parts cost must be $10, and the manufacturer isn't making a lot of money even at those prices.
Then the person with the idea starts a crowdsourced project, gets a lot of money... but because they do not have the experience or connections, they can't get the costs down like the big manufacturer can, and before they know it, they've blown half their money on traveling to various manufacturers trying to put the project together - and they don't even have enough left to cover the production run, even if they did it at cost.
That is the big risk of these projects. I don't think it's really scammers trying to swindle people, but rather doe-eyed inexperienced neophytes who just do not have the knowledge or information they need to embark on such projects in a successful manner.
Having said that, I know nothing about this project creator, nor do I know a lot about IR cameras. I own one (a FLIR i7) that was really expensive to buy... and I really like the technology and I know how it works. And what makes me nervous is that this guys claim that the expensive stuff is the processing and such, is totally untrue in my opinion. The expensive stuff is the optics and sensor. He is claiming to be able to make a camera for $150 that has the same resolution of a $2,0000 FLIR. That is over 90% cheaper. And considering FLIR is a huge company that has economies of scale (and purchasing power) this guy can't even dream of, it really makes me suspicious.
On top of the erroneous claim that the stuff in the phone are the expensive parts, I would personally not invest.