Wildfires in Idaho/Nevada

July 20th, 2007 |

AWIPS GOES + MODIS IR images

Increasing wildfire activity was noted across parts of the Great Basin region of the western US on 20 July 2007 — according to the National Fire Interagency Center, there were 43 large fires burning in the states of Idaho and Nevada on that day (NOAA HMS fire and smoke product). AWIPS images of the GOES and MODIS 3.9µm/3.7µm IR channels (above; top 2 image panels) and the 10.7µm/11.0µm (“IR window”) channels (above; bottom 2 image panels) showed a cluster of active fires straddling the Idaho/Nevada border around 05:30 UTC. The 4-km resolution GOES 3.9µm IR image (upper left panel) showed 3 separate areas of somewhat warm “fire hot spots” (dark grey to black pixels), while the 1-km resolution MODIS 3.7µm IR image (upper right panel) revealed a larger number of more intense “fire hot spots” (black to yellow to red pixels).

Since the areal coverage and intensity of the GOES hot spots was diminishing during the nighttime hours, the GOES-derived Wildfire ABBA product (below) did not indicate any fire activity along the Idaho/Nevada border region around 05:30 UTC; therefore, the 1-km resolution MODIS 3.7µm IR imagery shown above would have been the only satellite-based diagnostic of fire activity at that particular time.

GOES-11 Wildfire ABBA product

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