GFMC: Bush and Forest Fires in Australia

DLR small satellite onBi-spectral Infrared Detection (BIRD) observed Sydney wildfires 4 and 5 ofJanuary 2002

TheGerman Aerospace Center (DLR) Bi-spectral InfraredDetection (BIRD) smallsatellite is a technology demonstrator of new infrared push-broom sensorsdedicated to recognition and quantitative characterisation of thermal processeson the Earth surface.
BIRD was successfullypiggy-back launched on 22 October 2001 with an Indian Polar Satellite LaunchVehicle (PSLV-C3) into a circular sun-synchronous orbit with an altitude of 572km and a North – South local equator crossing time at 10:30 h. 
BIRD is a currently running in its commissioningphase.
The BIRD main sensor payload consists of:

  •  a two-channelinfrared Hot Spot Recognition Sensor system (HSRS),

  •  a Wide-AngleOptoelectronic Stereo Scanner (WAOSS-B).

Their characteristics are given in the table below.

  WAOSS-B  HSRS Spectral bands VIS: 600-670nm
NIR: 840-900nm MIR: 3.4-4.2µm
TIR: 8.5-9.3µm Focal length 21.65mm 46.39mm Field of view 50° 19° f-number 2.8 2.0 Detector CCD lines CdHgTe Arrays Detector cooling Passive, 20°C Stirling, 80-100K Pixel size 7µmx7µm 30µmx30µm Pixel number 2880 2×512 staggered Quantisation 11bit 14bit (for each exposure) Ground pixel size 185m 370m Sampling step 185m 185m Swath width 533km 190km

The BIRD main payload wasswitched on over the East coast of Australia on January 4 and 5, 2002 to observethe wildfires in that region by the Hot Spot Recognition System (HSRS) which isdedicated to fire detection and analysis.
The ability of the BIRD HSRS to perform a second exposure within the samplinginterval makes it possible along with measuring small thermal contrasts also toimage hot targets without saturation.


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