Image: Rail fire in Oregon still burning bright

Image: Rail fire in Oregon still burning bright
Credit: Jeff Schmaltz LANCE/EOSDIS MODIS Rapid Response Team, GSFC

The Rail Fire in Oregon began on July 31, 2016 and the cause of the blaze is unknown. It is located 5 miles west of Unity, Oregon. This fire has grown to 18,600 acres and is only 12% contained. The Suomi NPP satellite captured this image of the fire on August 16, 2016 using the VIIRS (Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite) instrument onboard. According to Inciweb the hot and dry conditions in the area are expected to persist today and last into the night. Night time humidity will continue to be low. The fire is expected to continue to actively burn with this weather pattern in place. Smoke conditions are being monitored daily. Conditions are expected to fluctuate between very unhealthy and hazardous in the Unity area.

The VIIRS instrument which collected this image is a 22-band radiometer which collects infrared and visible light data to observe weather, climate, oceans, nightlight, wildfires, movement of ice, and changes in vegetation and landforms. Suomi NPP is the first Earth-observing satellite to measure both global climate changes and key weather variables. Suomi NPP is managed by NASA, NOAA and the U.S. Department of Defense.

Actively burning areas, detected by Suomi's thermal bands, are outlined in red.


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Citation: Image: Rail fire in Oregon still burning bright (2016, August 18) retrieved 29 March 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2016-08-image-rail-oregon-bright.html
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