PIA15832: NASA Spacecraft Images Colorado's Most Destructive Wildfire to Date
 Target Name:  Earth
 Is a satellite of:  Sol (our sun)
 Mission:  Terra
 Spacecraft:  Terra
 Instrument:  ASTER
 Product Size:  2949 x 3723 pixels (w x h)
 Produced By:  JPL
 Full-Res TIFF:  PIA15832.tif (32.95 MB)
 Full-Res JPEG:  PIA15832.jpg (1.146 MB)

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The High Park fire west of Fort Collins, Colo., continued to burn Monday, June 25, 2012, when the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA's Terra spacecraft captured this image. The fire has burned more than 83,000 acres and has destroyed approximately 250 homes, the most in Colorado history. The blaze was started June 9 by lightning strikes. It is currently 45-percent contained, with an estimated date for full containment in late July. In the image, vegetation is depicted in red, burned ground is black, and the huge plume from the fire is in blue, streaming to the northeast. The image is located near 40.7 degrees north latitude and 105.2 degrees west longitude. It covers an area of 27.4 by 34.6 miles (44.2 by 55.8 kilometers).

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C.

More information about ASTER is available at http://asterweb.jpl.nasa.gov/.

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