Monitoring of wildfires in boreal forests using large area AVHRR NDVI composite image data
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): E. S. Kasischke; N. H.F. French; P. Harrell; N. L. Christensen; S. L. Ustin; D. Barry
Publication Year: 1993

Cataloging Information

  • boreal forests
  • climate change
  • fire regimes
  • fire size
  • forest management
  • remote sensing
  • wildfires
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 35568
Tall Timbers Record Number: 9869
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


Normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) composite image data, produced from AVHRR data collected in 1990, were evaluated for locating and mapping the areal extent of wildfires in the boreal forests of Alaska during that year. A technique was developed to map forest fire boundaries by subtracting a late-summer AVHRR NDVl image from an early summer scene. The locations and boundaries of wildfires within the interior region of Alaska were obtained from the Alaska Fire Service and compared to the AVHRR-derived fire-boundary map. It was found that AVHRR detected 89.5% of all fires with sizes greater than 2000 ha with no false alarms and that, for most cases, the general shape of the fire boundary detected by AVHRR matched those mapped by field observers. However the total area contained within the fire boundaries mapped by AVHRR were only 61% of those mapped by the field observers. However, the AVHRR data used in this study did not span the entire time period during which fires occurred, and it is believed the areal estimates could be improved significantly if an expanded AVHRR data set were used.

Kasischke, E. S., N. H. F. French, P. Harrell, N. L. Christensen, S. L. Ustin, and D. Barry. 1993. Monitoring of wildfires in boreal forests using large area AVHRR NDVI composite image data. Remote Sensing of Environment, v. 15, no. 1, p. 61-71.