Flooding in North Dakota, Minnesota and South Dakota

April 22nd, 2019 |

Landsat-8 False Color RGB image and GOES-16 Flood Detection product [click to enlarge]

Google Maps background, Landsat-8 False Color RGB image and GOES-16 ABI Flood Detection product [click to enlarge]

Comparison of a Landsat-8 False Color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) image with the corresponding GOES-16 ABI Flood Detection product as viewed using RealEarth (above) showed the extent of flooding along the Red River of the North (which forms the border of North Dakota and Minnesota, and flows northward into Manitoba) on 22 April 2019. The Red River flooding was a result of a relatively rapid Spring snow melt — a significant Winter snow cover across eastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota reached a peak in early March.

The Flood Detection product — originally developed for use with Suomi NPP VIIRS data, but adapted for use with GOES-16 ABI data — provides an estimate of land fractions with flooding water (green to yellow to red shades) along with regions of ice, snow cover, cloud and shadows. In the example above, much of Devils Lake in the southwest portion of the satellite scene was classified as ice (cyan), as the melting of winter ice was still in progress.

A closer view of the Landsat-8 False Color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) image and the corresponding GOES-16 ABI Flood Detection product for a portion of the Red River is shown below — the level of the Red River at Oslo, Minnesota was over 37 feet (hydrograph), at which point ND State Highway 54 has water over the road, MN State Highway 1 overtops and water affects the Canadian Pacific railroad tracks west of Oslo.

Google Maps background, Landsat-8 False Color RGB image and GOES-16 Flood Detection product [click to enlarge]

Google Maps background, Landsat-8 False Color RGB image and GOES-16 ABI Flood Detection product [click to enlarge]

Farther to the south, Landsat-8 False Color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) imagery along with the corresponding Suomi NPP VIIRS and GOES-16 ABI Flood Detection products over part of the James River (and upstream reservoirs) in northeastern South Dakota is shown below. Note that the higher spatial resolution of the VIIRS product (375 meters) indicated higher fractions of land with flooding water — up to 90% (red) compared to 60% (orange) with the ABI product.

Google Maps background, Landsat-8 False Color RGB image,and Suomi NPP VIIRS + GOES-16 Flood Detection products [click to enlarge]

Google Maps background, Landsat-8 False Color RGB image, and Suomi NPP VIIRS + GOES-16 Flood Detection products [click to enlarge]

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