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The University of Southampton
Geography and Environmental Science

Research project: FIre Radiative powEr Intercomparison & Emissions estimation (FIREsIdE) - Dormant

Currently Active: 
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Landscape fires are a key Earth system process, impacting 8 of 13 Earth radiative forcing agents and releasing large quantities of trace gases and aerosols to the atmosphere. The FIREsIdE project aims to validate satellite retrievals from Sentinal-3 that are used to quantify biomass burning emissions.

Start date: 1/5/2015
End date: 1/10/2019

Because biomass burning shows large regional and interannual variability, Earth Observation (EO) is the only approach capable of deriving information on fire activity and the associated atmospheric emissions with sufficient spatial & temporal coverage. Fire Radiative Power (FRP) retrievals provide a means to estimate fuel consumption and smoke emissions from landscape fires and this approach is used in the Copernicus Atmospheric Monitoring Service (CAMS) to forecast air quality. The SLSTR instrument onboard the Sentinal-3 satellites will provide FRP retrievals for the next 20 years and the FIREsIdE project aims to validate these retrievals to aid the development of a consistent long-term data record on fire activity. Scientific Services (SANParks) in Kruger National Park have been conducting controlled burns as part of a long running project initiated in 1954. These Experimental Burn Plots provide a unique opportunity to validate satellite FRP products. Controlled burns, coordinated with the Sentinel-3 overpass, will be observed from helicopter using handheld thermal imagers in order to validate the Sentinel-3 FRP retrievals. A secondary aim of the project is to investigate the extent to which 'emissions factors’, which are used to convert fuel consumption to emissions estimates, remain consistent across seasons or whether they change with fuel moisture or vegetation greenness.

Related research groups

Environmental Change and Sustainability (ECaS)
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