Fires and burn scars in central United States
Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC
With the return of the growing season, fires are beginning to appear all over the United States. These true- and false-color images, acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite on April 2, 2005, show the fires, which are marked in red, scattered across the states of Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Arkansas (from right to left in rows, top to bottom). The fires are concentrated most heavily in Kansas and Oklahoma. Some of the fires seem to have dark shadows on the ground near them; these dark spots are burn scars. Burn scars, which appear dark red in the false-color image, are the scorched aftermath of a fire. They generally last from one to two growing seasons, depending on the rate of plant growth.