“DigitalGlobe has been imaging the Vandenberg area each day since the fires broke out and providing this imagery to response teams on the ground. Our WorldView-3 satellite captured the image on the left five days ago, and the image on the right yesterday. These super-spectral images were taken with the satellite’s shortwave infrared (SWIR) sensor, which is uniquely able to pierce through smoke to provide high-fidelity identification of hot spots without the risk of having to fly a plane over an active fire.
Five days ago, the fire line, shown in bright orange, was as close as 2.5 km to Space Launch Complex (SLC)-3E. By yesterday, there were no active fires near the launch pad and few hotspots remaining in the Canyon Fire. The fire is now 90% contained, and the burn scar covering some 12,500 acres is clearly visible.
SWIR imagery is a valuable tool for combating wildfires, classifying materials in urban environments, and detecting minerals on earth’s surface. However, U.S. regulatory reform is needed to fully leverage this capability, as the SWIR imagery we are permitted to distribute today contains only 25% of the information that is captured by the satellite. Read more about this issue in my Space News op-ed.”
Subscribe to our newsletter
Stay updated on the latest technology, innovation product arrivals and exciting offers to your inbox.Newsletter