PyroCb by Great Slave Lake in the Northwest Territories

GOES-15 0.63 µm visible (left) and 3.9 µm shortwave IR (right) images (click to play animation)

GOES-15 0.63 µm visible (left) and 3.9 µm shortwave IR (right) images (click to play animation)

On August 5, 2014 one of the fires surrounding the Great Slave Lake in the Northwest Territories, Canada produced a pyroCb detected by GOES-15 0.63 µm visible channel and 3.9 µm shortwave IR channel images (above; click image to play animation) around 20:00 UTC located near 60.5º North and 115º West, then rapidly drifting west as it develops.  At that time the fire source hot spot on the shortwave IR image (right panel) showed an IR brightness temperature of 338.3 K (red enhancement).

GOES-15 10.7 µm IR images (click to play animation)

GOES-15 10.7 µm IR images (click to play animation)

The corresponding GOES-15 10.7 µm IR channel images (above; click to play animation) indicated that the pyroCb cloud feature displayed a minimum IR brightness temperature value of -43.9º C at 20:00 UTC.  As the pyroCb developed, the cloud top continued to get colder and, therefore, higher up in the atmosphere.

The Aqua MODIS image (below) taken at 20:20 UTC shows the pyroCb in it’s very early stages of development.  The red pixels are hot spot enhancements, very similar to the enhancements on the shortwave IR imagery, indicating where the fires are located around Great Slave Lake.

MODIS true-color image of Great Slave Lake with a red-pixel enhancement over the fires.

Aqua MODIS true-color image of Great Slave Lake with a red-pixel enhancement over the fires.

 

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