PyroCb in British Columbia

On 05 May there was a pyroCb in British Columbia  at 56.6 N 120 W. GOES-15 detected the smoke plume and clouds around the fires, as well as the fire hot spots. Starting at 00:00 UTC on 06 May, the animation below shows visible (0.63 μm) on the left and shortwave IR (3.9 μm) on the right (click image to play animation). In the shortwave IR images the darker black to red pixels indicate very hot IR brightness temperatures exhibited by the fire source region.

GOES-15 0.64 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)

Using GOES-15 10.7 μm IR channel imagery the minimum cloud-top IR brightness temperatures could be found. The animation below, starting at 00:00 UTC on 06 May, shows that the pyroCu reached around -35ºC (dark blue color enhancement) around 02:30 UTC. At 3:11 UTC which is after the image loops the pyroCu reached a brightness temperature of -40.4ºC and is now considered a pyroCb.

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

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

In addition, the GOES-14 satellite was operating in Super Rapid Scan Operations for GOES-R (SRSOR) mode, providing images at 1-minute intervals. The animation below (also available as a large 115 Mbyte Animated GIF) showed the flare-up of fire hot spots and the development of smoke plumes beginning at 1915 UTC on 05 May.

GOES-14 0.63 µm Visible (top) and 3.9 µm Shortwave Infrared (bottom) images [click to play MP4 animation]

GOES-14 0.63 µm Visible (top) and 3.9 µm Shortwave Infrared (bottom) images [click to play MP4 animation]

To further investigate the transport of smoke from this fire CALIPSO (courtesy of Mike Fromm) was used. This LIDAR shows the height of the clouds from the wildfire. The first image below is the 532nm Total Attenuated Backscatter plot on 06 May from 07:30 UTC to 7:52 UTC. This CALIPSO track is east and north of the pyroCb but smoke was still detected The smoke from this fires can be seen ~48 N indicated faintly by a red color. The second image is 1064 nm Total Attenuated Backscatter plot, the smoke on this plot is indicated by a yellow/red color. The third image is the Depolarization image the smoke is indicated by a blue color. The fourth image is the Attenuated Ratio plot between 1064 nm and 532 nm. The smoke is indicated by magenta pixels. The fifth image is the Vertical Feature Mask. This plot shows the different features that are in the atmosphere, the smoke is attributed as a cloud on this plot and is indicated by a yellow color.

CALIPSO 532 nm Total Attenuated Backscatter on 06 May(click to enlarge)

CALIPSO 532 nm Total Attenuated Backscatter on 06 May(click to enlarge)

CALIPSO 1064 nm Total Attenuated Backscatter on 06 May (click to enlarge)

CALIPSO 1064 nm Total Attenuated Backscatter on 06 May (click to enlarge)

CALIPSO Depolarization Ration on 06 May (click to enlarge)

CALIPSO Depolarization Ration on 06 May (click to enlarge)

CALIPSO Attenuated Color Ratio between 1064 nm and 532 nm on 06 May (click to enlarge image)

CALIPSO Attenuated Color Ratio between 1064 nm and 532 nm on 06 May (click to enlarge image)

CALIPSO Vertical Feature Mask on 06 May (click to enlarge image)

CALIPSO Vertical Feature Mask on 06 May (click to enlarge image)

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