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USDA Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Center Operational Satellite-Based Remote Sensing Fire Support Programs WRAP/FETS Project Meeting Boise, Idaho August 31-September 1, 2009. Remote Sensing Applications Center (RSAC). National Technical Center

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slide1

USDA Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications CenterOperational Satellite-Based Remote Sensing Fire Support ProgramsWRAP/FETS Project MeetingBoise, IdahoAugust 31-September 1, 2009

remote sensing applications center rsac
Remote Sensing Applications Center (RSAC)
  • National Technical Center
    • Detached Washington Office – Engineering
    • Geospatial Management Organization (GMO)
  • Mission: Provide national assistance to agency units and deputy areas in applying the most advanced geospatial technology toward improved monitoring and mapping of natural resources
usda forest service organization
USDA Forest Service Organization
  • National Headquarters in Washington, DC
  • 9 Regional Offices
  • National Forest System
    • 155 National Forests and 20 National Grasslands
      • 600 Ranger Districts
    • 193 million acres in CONUS, AK and PR
  • Research
    • 7 stations
    • 50 field offices
  • State and Private Forestry
    • Fire & Aviation
    • Forest Health Protection
  • International Programs
remote sensing applications center rsac1
Remote Sensing Applications Center (RSAC)

Rapid Disturbance Assessment and Services Program

  • Tactical and strategic remote sensing support Forest Service units and external partners in response to disturbance events
  • Includes operational active wildland fire management and post-fire assessment support programs/projects
rsac areas of interest for operational air quality management support
RSAC Areas of Interest for Operational Air Quality Management Support
  • Provide high temporal observations/value-added products from various satellites (MODIS, AURA, VIIRS, etc.) to support USFS and other agency air quality managers
    • Identify source/receptor relationships
      • Exceptional events in relation to states
      • Natural and anthropogenic sources of smoke relative to Class 1 areas
      • Rx fire effects on urban areas
  • Provide satellite-based ozone monitoring products, particularly in the south Sierras and the southeast U.S.
    • Integrate/analyze results with ongoing USFS ground-based ozone monitoring efforts
  • Provide fire detection, burn scar and burn severity geospatial data products (moderate and high resolution) for existing and future emissions tracking/forecasting applications
    • WRAP/FETS
    • Blue Sky Smoke Modeling Framework
rsac satellite based fire mapping programs
RSAC Satellite-Based Fire Mapping Programs

Active Fire Mapping

  • MODIS Direct Readout/Active Fire Mapping Program
      • Near real-time fire detection, characterization and monitoring
      • Support interagency strategic fire management and planning

Post-fire Mapping

  • Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS)
      • Assess frequency, extent and severity of all current/historical large wildland fires
      • Monitor national fire policy effectiveness
  • Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) Imagery Support
      • Emergency assessment of burn severity
      • Support emergency stabilization activities by USFS BAER teams
  • Rapid Assessment of Vegetation Condition after Wildfire (RAVG)
      • Rapid assessment of forest damage
      • Revegetation decision support data/information for USFS forest silviculturists
forest service modis active fire mapping program
Forest Service MODIS Active Fire Mapping Program
  • Satellite-based operational detection and monitoring of wildland fire activity in CONUS, Alaska, Hawaii & Canada
  • Generate and provide "value added” fire mapping and visualization products, and geospatial data
  • Facilitates decision support for strategic wildfire planning and response for U.S. and Canadian fire agencies
    • Prioritize allocation of fire suppression assets
    • Focus tactical airborne reconnaissance assets
    • Supports several fire-related applications and decision support systems
slide8

Forest Service MODIS Active Fire Mapping Program

Currently Leveraged Sensor Assets

* VIIRS launch on NPOESS Preparatory Project (NPP) mission in June 2011 and subsequent NPOESS missions

# GOES-R launch in 2015 and subsequent missions

slide9

Central Idaho

Aug 12, 2007

False Color Composite

(1-KM detection

centroids in yellow)

Central Idaho

Aug 12, 2007

False Color Composite

(Active fires in orange)

Central Idaho

Aug 12, 2007

True Color Composite

MODIS Fire & Thermal Anomalies (MOD14/MYD14)

  • Detects & characterizes fire at 1kmspatial resolution at time of satellite overpass
  • Leverages response of 4mand 11m bands to fire
  • Absolute thresholds and contextual analysis
  • Fire detection is affected by several variables
    • Atmospheric conditions, view angle, land cover, overpass time relative to fire activity, etc.
  • Fire activity smaller than 1km can be detected
    • 100m2 flaming fire (50% probability)
    • 50m2 flaming fire in ideal viewing conditions (~100% probability)
afm operational fire product deliverables

Northern California – June 27, 2008

AFM Operational Fire Product Deliverables

Value-Added Mapping/Visualization Products and Geospatial Data

  • Printable regional fire detection maps
  • Interactive web fire detection maps
  • Google Earth fire KML/KMZ products
  • Fire detection GIS datasets
  • True & False color image subsets
  • Fire detection analysis/summary products
a look at recent fire activity with modis
A Look At Recent Fire Activity With MODIS

Southern California – August 29, 2009 1515 MDT

Aqua MODIS True Color Composite

a look at recent fire activity with modis1
A Look At Recent Fire Activity With MODIS

Southern California – August 29, 2009 1515 MDT

Aqua MODIS False Color Composite

a look at recent fire activity with modis2
A Look At Recent Fire Activity With MODIS

Station Fire – August 31, 2009 1300 MDT

rsac satellite based fire mapping programs1
RSAC Satellite-Based Fire Mapping Programs

Active Fire Mapping

  • MODIS Direct Readout/Active Fire Mapping Program
      • Near real-time fire detection, characterization and monitoring
      • Support interagency strategic fire management and planning

Post-fire Mapping

  • Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS)
      • Assess frequency, extent and severity of all current/historical large wildland fires
      • Monitor national fire policy effectiveness
  • Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) Imagery Support
      • Emergency assessment of burn severity
      • Support emergency stabilization activities by USFS BAER teams
  • Rapid Assessment of Vegetation Condition after Wildfire (RAVG)
      • Rapid assessment of forest damage
      • Revegetation decision support data/information for USFS forest silviculturists
mtbs project overview
MTBS Project Overview
  • Consistently map the location, extent and burn severity of large fires on all lands in the CONUS, AK, HI and PR from 1984 and 2010
    • > 1,000 acres in the western United States
    • > 500 acres in the eastern United States
  • Initiated in FY 2006
  • Sponsored by the interagency Wildland Fire Leadership Council (WFLC)
    • One element of a strategy monitoring the effectiveness of NFP and HFRA
  • Jointly implemented by USFS RSAC and USGS EROS
    • Equal funding from USDA-FS and DOI
slide17

Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity

Leveraged Sensor Assets

1 – LDCM launch currently scheduled for December 2012

Why Landsat???

  • Operational precedent
    • NPS fire atlases
    • USFS/DOI BAER Programs
  • Landsat TM/ETM data record (1984 to present)
    • Consistent data record spanning ecologically and possibly climatically significant time frame
  • Resolution synergy
    • Spatial and spectral resolutions comparable to other national scale data
burn severity mapping primer
Burn Severity Mapping Primer

Exploiting Spectral Response Curves…

Visible

NIR

SWIR

burn severity mapping primer1

Landsat

NBR

dNBR

Burn Severity

Pre-fire

6/8/2005

Difference

Post-fire

Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR)

NBR = (NIR – SWIR) / (NIR + SWIR)

6/14/2007

Differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR)

dNBR = Pre NBR – Post NBR

Burn Severity Mapping Primer
  • Burn scar delineation and burn severity characterization are based on Landsat TM/ETM image pairs and the differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR)
  • See “Landscape Assessment” section in Fire Effects Monitoring and Inventory Protocol (FIREMON)
mtbs fire mapping methods overview
MTBS Fire Mapping Methods Overview
  • Compile a single MTBS fire occurrence database (FOD) from existing data sources
    • 28,000+ fire occurrences between 1984-2008
    • Numerous duplicates, spatial anomalies, etc
  • Based on FOD and prescribed assessment strategy, select pre and post-fire Landsat scenes
    • Determined by primarily biophysical setting of fire
  • Landsat TM/ETM+ data ordered and acquired from EROS
    • All Landsat data are free (since late 2008)
  • Perform necessary pre-processing, create and subset dNBR images, burn scar delineation, threshold dNBR images into burn severity classes
  • Metadata, map products, burn severity GIS data analysis, and reporting summary
mtbs fire occurrence locations
MTBS Fire Occurrence Locations

1984-2008

28,000+ target fires

Numerous duplicates and spatial anomalies

28,000+ fires for 1984-2008

mtbs methods assessment strategy
MTBS Methods – Assessment Strategy
  • Based on fire type
    • Extended Assessment (EA)
      • Severity based on post-fire assessment at peak of green of next growing season
      • Forests/shrublands
    • Initial Assessment (IA)
      • Severity based on immediate post-fire assessment
      • Grasslands/shrublands
    • “Single Scene” Assessment
      • Lack of suitable pre-fire imagery or other factors; use post-fire NBR
      • Conducted on a limited basis (EAs and IAs)
mtbs geospatial products

Prefire Image

Postfire Image

Thematic Burn Severity

Burn Severity Indices

Unburned to Low

Low

Moderate

High

MTBS Geospatial Products

Fire Level Datasets

  • Available at http://www.mtbs.gov
  • Pre/Post-fire Landsat imagery
    • Bands 1-5, 7
  • Burn scar boundary
    • Vector delineation of burned area extent based on image analysis
  • Continuous burn severity indices
    • dNBR/RdNBR
  • Thematic burn severity data
    • 6 classes (unburned to low, low, moderate, high, increased vegetation response, non-mappable areas)
mtbs production status

1984-2007

~9,600 fires completed

81.6 million acres

MTBS Production Status
mtbs geospatial products1
MTBS Geospatial Products

Composite MTBS Fire Datasets

  • National
    • Burn Scar Boundaries
      • ESRI Shapefile w/metadata
      • Fire attributes
    • Fire Occurrence Database
      • ESRI Shapefile w/metadata
      • Geographic centroid of burn scar boundaries for each fire
      • Fire and MTBS processing attributes
  • Regional
    • Thematic Burn Severity Image Mosaics
      • 6 class thematic GeoTiffs w/metadata
      • Available by MTBS mapping zone/year

2005 burn severity mosaics by MTBS zones

burned area emergency response baer
Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER)
  • Fast track emergency assessment
    • Fires ranging from 100s of acres to 100s of thousands of acres in size
  • Assess fire effects on the soil and watershed hydrologic function (erosion and flood potential)
  • Prescribe and implement emergency stabilization measures to mitigate potential hazards to:
    • Life
    • Property
    • Long-term soil productivity
    • Water quality
    • Natural resources
  • BAER response plan is required within 7 days of fire containment
  • Remote sensing support is critical in generating BAER team response plans

Straw waddles on Pike-San Isabel NF

Contour logging on Shasta-Trinity NF

burned area emergency response imagery support
Burned Area Emergency Response Imagery Support
  • Provide rapid delivery of imagery and derived products to Forest Service BAER teams
    • Burned Area Reflectance Classification (BARC), preliminary vegetation burn severity, based on dNBR/dNDVI assessment
    • BAER teams use BARC with field observations and other spatial data to generate a soil burn severity map
  • RSAC remote sensing support provided at or immediately after fire containment
    • Emergency assessment
  • RSAC provides imagery and data products within 24 hours of image acquisition
  • 532 fires completed since 2001 (13.6 million acres)
  • USFS and DOI BAER support programs combined -736 fires completed since 2001 (25.7 million acres)

Prefire

Postfire

BARC

slide28

Burned Area Emergency Response Imagery Support

Leveraged Sensor Assets – Use Best Available

1 – Anomalous SWIR band issues since April 2008; 2 -LDCM launch currently scheduled for December 2012

creation of the barc

Prefire

Postfire

dNBR

BARC

Unburned to Low

Low

Moderate

High

Creation of the BARC

Black Pine 2 Fire Sawtooth NF

73,000 Acres

Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR)

Differenced Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR)

NBR = (NIR – SWIR) / (NIR + SWIR)

dNBR = Pre NBR – Post NBR

Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI)

Differenced NDVI (dNDVI)

NDVI = (NIR – Red) / (NIR + Red)

dNDVI = Pre NDVI – Post NDVI

dNDVI is utilized when appropriate SWIR band is not available

burned area emergency response imagery support1

3D Visualizations

Map Products

Burned Area Emergency Response Imagery Support

BAER Support Rapid Delivery Products

Prefire Image

Postfire Image

dNBR or dNDVI Image

BARC Image

post fire vegetation management on national forest system lands
Post-Fire Vegetation Management on National Forest System Lands
  • Agency resources to support reforestation in burned areas are limited, consequently, better prioritization is needed
  • USFS Region 5 facilitated a protocol for rapid identification of deforestation and reforestation need on National Forest System lands
    • Leverage relationship of satellite-based burn severity observations to Composite Burn Index (CBI) field plot data that quantify fire effects to vegetation (deforestation)
    • Spatially represent forested vs. deforested areas following wildfire
      • Based on Landfire EVT
    • Silviculturists use results as a tool to identify and prioritize land suitable for reforestation
      • Natural Recovery
      • Assisted Recovery (planting, seeding or site preparation for natural recovery)
rapid assessment of vegetation condition after wildfire ravg

Postfire Image

RdNBR

7 Class Basal Area Mortality

Rapid Assessment of Vegetation Condition after Wildfire (RAVG)
  • Provide Landsat imagery and derived products characterizing fire effects on forest resources to silviculturists (based on USFS protocol)
    • Assessment based on RdNBR – a relative version of dNBR
    • Regression models based on CBI field plot data and RdNBR used to derive post-fire forest condition layers:
      • Burn severity
      • % basal area loss
      • % canopy cover loss
  • Conducted on fires where > 1,000 acres of NFS forested land is affected
  • RAVG data and summary products are provided within 30 days of fire containment
  • 142 fires completed since 2007 (~4.5 million acres)
rapid assessment of vegetation condition after wildfire
Rapid Assessment of Vegetation Condition after Wildfire

Primary RAVG Product Deliverables

Prefire Landsat image

Postfire Landsat image

Burn Scar Boundary

dNBR and RdNBR

% Change in Basal Area

% Change in Canopy Cover

Burn Severity

Forested/Deforested map and tabular summaries by land status and slope

additional information
Additional Information

RSAC Fire Mapping Support Programs

MODIS Active Fire Mapping Program

http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us

Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity Project

http://www.mtbs.gov

BAER Imagery Support Program

http://www.fs.fed.us/eng/rsac/baer

Rapid Assessment of Vegetation after Fire Program

http://www.fs.fed.us/postfirevegcondition/index.php