Pacific Gas and Electric Company has deployed a satellite-based technology called the PG&E Satellite Fire Detection and Alerting System that is designed to alert authorities to wildfire incidents.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites provide data for the system, the company said Friday.
“Once the fire detection and monitoring algorithm detects the heat signature of a possible fire, an alert is generated and made available to analysts in the Wildfire Safety Operations Center,” said Scott Strenfel, principal meteorologist for PG&E’s Community Wildfire Safety Program.
He added, “The application we’ve developed displays detections on an interactive map, which also allows users to track the general spread and intensity of fires in near real-time as the data are refreshed as quick as every minute.”
The company’s meteorology team worked with scientists and engineers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison to develop the alert system.