Active Fires As Observed by VIIRS, 2022-Present

  • Released Friday, March 1, 2024

This animated visualization uses a moving five-day window of VIIRS measurments of fire radiative power (FRP), to present a view of fire intensities around the globe.

This visualization shows active fires as observed by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite, or VIIRS, since the beginning of 2022. The VIIRS instrument flies on the Joint Polar Satellite System’s Suomi-NPP and NOAA-20 polar-orbiting satellites. Instruments on polar orbiting satellites typically observe a wildfire at a given location a few times a day as they orbit the Earth from pole to pole. VIIRS detects hot spots at a resolution of 375 meters per pixel, which means it can detect smaller, lower temperature fires than other fire-observing satellites. Its observations are about three times more detailed than those from the MODIS instrument, for example. VIIRS also provides nighttime fire detection capabilities through its Day-Night Band, which can measure low-intensity visible light emitted by small and fledgling fires. This visualization uses data from the Suomi-NPP VIIRS instrument, and will be updated periodically.

Equirectangular version, suitable for mapping to a sphere. No dates or colorbar.


Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio

Release date

This page was originally published on Friday, March 1, 2024.
This page was last updated on Saturday, July 13, 2024 at 12:10 AM EDT.

Datasets used in this visualization

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