Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Burning Forests Speedily Space-mapped For Fire Fighters

Date:
July 2, 2003
Source:
European Space Agency
Summary:
Satellite data are used for compiling forest fire risk indices as well as damage mapping, but rapid provision of fine-resolution data has so far not been used in operational fire fighting. To track blazes as they happen, fire fighters must rely on eyewitnesses or helicopter surveys – up until now.

Around 45 000 forest fires start across Europe every year, with half a million hectares of woodland lost in the Mediterranean region alone. The European Commission estimates the cost of every hectare burnt equals between a thousand and 5000 Euros. Satellite data are used for compiling forest fire risk indices as well as damage mapping, but rapid provision of fine-resolution data has so far not been used in operational fire fighting. To track blazes as they happen, fire fighters must rely on eyewitnesses or helicopter surveys – up until now.

The Galicia-based demonstration campaign is known as DEMOBIRD and commenced with an initial trial on May 30. This involved using infrared sensors aboard Germany's BIRD (Bi-spectral Infrared Detection) satellite to chart thermal hot spots within a 190 km strip of land during the satellite's four-minute pass over the Spanish province. Once the satellite acquired the data it was downlinked to ESA's Villafranca tracking station near Madrid, then transferred to the German Aerospace Centre DLR for calibration and passed on to Spanish prime contractor INSA to be processed for products, delivered to users and validated with GPS readings taken on the ground.

Before BIRD had completed a single orbit, local fire fighters had been provided with geo-referenced hot-spot maps together with a risk index indicating where the blaze was most likely to spread as well as fireline representations. The data detected a hundred per cent of the fires over cloud-free areas. Later tests established data delivery times could be cut to an hour once the DEMOBIRD system is fully implemented.

DEMOBIRD is being run by INSA and the Laboratorio de Teledetecciσn of the University of Valladolid as part of the ESA Earth Watch Programme FUGEOSAT. The aim is to develop and launch a constellation of small satellites to supply operational data to help fight forest fires.

Woodland areas will be surveyed with a high revisit time to enable risk monitoring for prevention and planning, as well as detecting fires as they start and then analyze and predict their evolution over time.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Space Agency. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Space Agency. "Burning Forests Speedily Space-mapped For Fire Fighters." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 July 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030701215623.htm>.
European Space Agency. (2003, July 2). Burning Forests Speedily Space-mapped For Fire Fighters. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030701215623.htm
European Space Agency. "Burning Forests Speedily Space-mapped For Fire Fighters." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030701215623.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Squid experts in New Zealand thawed and examined an unusual catch on Tuesday: a colossal squid. It was captured in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea in December last year and has been frozen for eight months. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

Researchers Explore Shipwrecks Off Calif. Coast

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Federal researchers are exploring more than a dozen underwater sites where they believe ships sank in the treacherous waters west of San Francisco in the decades following the Gold Rush. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Isolated N. Korea Asks For International Help With Volcano

Isolated N. Korea Asks For International Help With Volcano

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — Mount Paektu volcano in North Korea is showing signs of life and there's not much known about it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

      Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins