Bush fires in eastern Australia
JMA Himawari-8 “Red” Visible (0.64 µm), Shortwave Infrared (3.9 µm) and Longwave Infrared Window (10.4 µm) imagery (below) showed the evolution of smoke plumes, hot 3.9 µm fire thermal anomalies (red pixels) and cloud-top infrared brightness temperatures of isolated pyrocumulus associated with bush fires that were burning in far eastern parts of New South Wales and Queensland, Australia from 1900 UTC on 07 November to 0800 UTC on 08 November 2019. With strong northwesterly surface winds, many of the fire thermal anomalies exhibited rapid southeastward runs toward the coast. That region of Australia had just experienced severe to record 3-month rainfall deficiencies — which included the driest October on record for the southern third of the country.Himawari-8 True Color Red-Green-Blue (RGB) images created using McIDAS-V (below) provided another view of the dense smoke plumes from 0000-0610 UTC. Toward the end of the animation — in the upper left portion of the satellite scene — plumes of blowing dust could be seen moving eastward from farther inland. A combination of Suomi NPP VIIRS True Color RGB and Shortwave Infrared (4.1 µm) imagery at 0328 UTC (below) revealed hot thermal signatures of the fires (yellow to red enhancement) at the source of the smoke plumes. A toggle between a Suomi NPP VIIRS True Color RGB image and a display of Sentinel-5 TROPOMI Tropospheric Vertical Column NO2 (below) indicated high NO2 concentrations immediately downwind of these fires. The dense smoke plumes were also evident in a sequence of 3 VIIRS True Color RGB images from NOAA-20 and Suomi NPP, as visualized using RealEarth (below). Smoke reduced the surface visibility to 3 miles or less at Grafton (YGFN) from 03-05 UTC (below).
At 5.30pm, there are 96 fires burning across the state, with 57 yet to be contained. 17 fires remain at Emergency Warning, mostly across the north coast and northern NSW. If you are near a fire at Emergency Warning level, take action now to protect your life. #nswrfs #nswfires pic.twitter.com/FWIQs2o0ES
— NSW RFS (@NSWRFS) November 8, 2019