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Fire Science: Wildfire Monitoring and Prediction

Fire Imaging: Border #50 Fire
Border #50 Fire, San Diego County
5 October 2005

As viewed by the FireMapper™ Thermal-Imaging Radiometer

Thermal Mosaic
Plan view of fire shown on shaded relief map (DEM).

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Current Image: Thermal mosaic
Ground surface temperatures as viewed from above at 8-12 micrometers wavelength on 5 October 2005, at 8:04 pm PDT.


Fire Imagery

These images depict approximate fireline locations in color-coded pixels of apparent ground surface temperatures in Celsius. Use the map backgrounds as a general location guide, and look for recognizable terrain features or landmarks on the imagery itself for relative positioning of hotspots. Bodies of water, street grids, open fields, highways, ridgelines and stream courses show up well in this imagery.

Images were collected from the PSW Airborne Sciences Aircraft and disseminated in part by satellite communications in near-real time. FireMapper measures the radiance of emitted thermal-infrared light, which readily penetrates smoke. False-color images shown here depict the apparent surface temperature (in Celsius) as estimated from radiance and a simple black-body model. Warmer tones represent recent or active combustion; areas of light gray are cooling ash or warm bare ground and the low temperatures of unburned forest and cool ground are shown in darker gray (see chart above). Images have been geographically referenced. Vertical exaggeration in 3-d views is 1.5 to one unless otherwise noted.





Image 1: Mosaic
Plan view of fire shown on 1:24k topo map (DRG).

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Archives of past fires: 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001

Forest mapping: 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001

FireMapper™ Specifications: Instrument

FireMapper™ References: Publications

FireMapper™ Tools- image analysis software: ftp downloads page

For Further Information: contact Dr. Philip J. Riggan


FireMapper™ has been developed through a Research Joint Venture with Space Instruments, Inc., and support from the National Fire Plan, Forest Service International Programs, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Joint Fire Sciences Program, and the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Disclaimer: Trade names, commercial products, and enterprises are mentioned solely for information. No endorsement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture is implied.

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 Last Modified: 2005-10-12