1-minute imagery of wildfires and pyrocumulonimbus clouds in British Columbia1-minute Mesoscale Domain Sector GOES-18 (GOES-West) Fire Temperature RGB and “Clean” Infrared Window (10.3 µm) images (above) showed the intensification of 3 wildfires in northeast British Columbia on 20 May 2023. Two of the fires produced pyrocumulonimbus (pyroCb) clouds, exhibiting cloud-top 10.3 µm infrared brightness temperatures of -50ºC or colder (shades of red) — which then eventually moved eastward across far northwest Alberta. The southernmost fire continuously exhibited a 3.9 µm infrared brightness temperature of 137.88 K — the saturation temperature of GOES-18 ABI Band 7 detectors — for a period of 70 minutes (from 2240-2350 UTC).
During the time period that the fires were burning very hot and beginning to produce pyroCB clouds, 1-minute GOES-18 Fire Temperature RGB images and “Red” Visible (0.64 µm) images with an overlay of the Fire Power derived product (below) showed that the southernmost fire frequently exhibited Fire Power values in excess of 5000 MW (with a peak of 5487.76 MW at 2304 UTC). The Fire Power derived product is a component of the GOES Fire Detection and Characterization Algorithm (FDCA).The subsequent motion of the 2 pyroCb anvils was evident in GOES-18 Nighttime Microphysics RGB imagery from the CSPP GeoSphere site (below), as they drifted southeast across Alberta and Saskatchewan.