An interesting read on the merits of UAV (drone) technology in the battle against wildfires. Sadly, the media often has focused on the pitfalls of UAV hobbyists grounding aerial attacks on fires, however, there’s also the upside of the industry that has joined the battle. This from KUOW… The National Park Service used a borrowed surveillance dronethis past week over the long-burning Paradise Fire in Olympic National Park. The Boeing Company’s unmanned aircraft subsidiary Insitu provided the drone and two professional pilots at no charge for a demonstration. The nearly 50-pound, catapult-launchedScanEagle plane flew on six days — both day and night.
In an effort to keep the public informed and make data available to them during the recent wildfires near Colorado Springs, CO the company turned to open source as a solution.
Their blog goes into details of how they luckily, had already been working on a system designed for rapid web publishing and thus managed to roll out a solution built almost entirely on Open Source, with the exception of the ArcGIS Server component (apparently an option exists to migrate to the Open Source Geoserver in the future).
To see the results for yourself check out the web map and imagery at https://services.sanborn.com/maps/60
Some interesting visualizations coming from NASA these days, this latest effort revealing the dispersion of smoke from wildfires over the continental US. About the map… The map below depicts the relative concentration of aerosols in the skies above the continental United States on June 26, 2012. The map was assembled from data acquired by the Ozone Mapper Profiler Suite (OMPS) on the new Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (S-NPP) satellite. Aerosol are tiny solid and liquid particles that have an outsized impact on weather and climate. Their concentrations are represented above in shades of red and yellow, with the highest concentrations in deep red and the lowest in light yellow. Grays represent clouds or areas where no reliable data were available.
An interesting map paints a pretty clear picture as to the extend of the fire near Colorado Springs, spanning north from Garden of The Gods by Manitou Springs north into Pike National Forest and past the Air Force Academy, sandwiched in between HWY 14 and within about 2 miles of I-25 – good luck everyone in the area! Direct link to the Map HERE [Read more…]
Esri has released another social news map providing user with updates and data feeds related to the current U.S wildfire situation. The map service provides fire perimeter data, burn areas, weather information like wind speeds and precipitation, models wildfire potential, and also integrates live social media feeds pulling relevant data from Twitter, youtube, and Flickr. The app is designed for simple, fast social media sharing and others have the ability to quickly grab the embed code to repurpose and share the map from other blogs and web portals.
- See Also the Google Crisis wildfire response map