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Inter-comparison of Active Fire Locations from a Biomass Burning Event in Equatorial Southeast Asia

Mastura Mahmud

Abstract


A study on the inter-comparison of the spatial distribution of the active fire counts between the NOAA, MODIS Aqua, and MODIS Terra satellites was conducted for a major biomass-burning event that occurred in Sumatera, Indonesia. During the burning period in August 2005, the NOAA satellite detected 6378 hotspots, whereas the Aqua and Terra satellites identified 3564 and 1860, respectively. Statistical results showed that the daily mean centres and centres of minimum distances were located at similar positions for the NOAA active fire counts compared to either the Terra or Aqua active fire counts although no significant differences exist between the three satellites. The burning activities displayed tendencies of clustering during the first two weeks of August, which triggered the transboundary haze across the neighbouring Peninsular Malaysia. The NOAA satellite active fire counts displayed a mean near neighbourhood distance of 3.5 km that indicated more burning occurred in the late evening in contrast to either in the morning (Terra) or early afternoon (Aqua) when the distances between neighbouring fires were further apart. Significant clustering existed between the spatial and temporal fire events from the three satellites. All the significant correlations showed a higher proportion of fire events that were close in distance and time.

Keywords


spatial distribution, active fire counts, Southeast Asia, biomass burning

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