NOAA Satellite Watches Smoke From Apple Fire Spread – Driven by High Temperatures, Strong Winds

August 2, 2020. (Click image for full, detailed view.)

On August 2, 2020, the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite 17 (GOES-17) acquired this image of the Apple Fire as it raged near San Bernardino National Forest. GOES-17 is operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); NASA helps develop and launch the GOES series of satellites.

The fire started on July 31, and by the morning of August 2, the long smoke plume had Arizona residents waking up to an orange-tinted sky.

High temperatures, strong winds, and steep terrain have made fire-fighting difficult. As of the morning of August 3, the fire had consumed more than 40 square miles (100 square kilometers) and was 5 percent contained. California officials have ordered more than 7,000 people to evacuate, and at least one home was destroyed.

NASA Earth Observatory image by Joshua Stevens, using GOES 17 imagery courtesy of NOAA and the National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS).

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