Fire Detection Using GOES Rapid Scan Imagery

John F. Weaver NOAA/NESDIS/RAMM Team, Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

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Dan Lindsey NOAA/NESDIS/RAMM Team, Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

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Dan Bikos NOAA/NESDIS/RAMM Team, Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

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Chris C. Schmidt Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies, Madison, Wisconsin

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Elaine Prins NOAA/NESDIS/ORA/ARAD Advanced Satellite Products Team, Madison, Wisconsin

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Abstract

This paper demonstrates the proper use of geostationary satellite imagery in wildland fire detection. The roles of both the visible and the 3.9-μm channels are emphasized. Case studies from June 2002 are presented to illustrate techniques that can be utilized in both the detection and short-range forecasting processes. The examples demonstrate that, when utilized correctly, the sensitivity of the shortwave infrared channel to subpixel heat sources can often result in detections that match the timelines of human observations. Finally, a derived satellite product that increases the detection rate of wildland fires from space is described.

Corresponding author address: John F. Weaver, NOAA/NESDIS/ RAMM, CIRA Bldg., Colorado State University, Foothills Campus, Fort Collins, CO 80523. Email: weaver@colostate.edu

Abstract

This paper demonstrates the proper use of geostationary satellite imagery in wildland fire detection. The roles of both the visible and the 3.9-μm channels are emphasized. Case studies from June 2002 are presented to illustrate techniques that can be utilized in both the detection and short-range forecasting processes. The examples demonstrate that, when utilized correctly, the sensitivity of the shortwave infrared channel to subpixel heat sources can often result in detections that match the timelines of human observations. Finally, a derived satellite product that increases the detection rate of wildland fires from space is described.

Corresponding author address: John F. Weaver, NOAA/NESDIS/ RAMM, CIRA Bldg., Colorado State University, Foothills Campus, Fort Collins, CO 80523. Email: weaver@colostate.edu

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