Meteorologist at Weather Underground, background in fire weather research. Twitter: @WunderKari
By: Kari Kiefer , 12:44 AM GMT on July 17, 2008
Tuesday and Wednesday we finally saw some burns! Before the burning, we need ambient background conditions so we launched a weather balloon first thing in the morning. This gives us a reference for comparison when we later analyze our data. We tried to launch the balloons approximately 1 km from the burn site.
The ignition crew drives along the perimeter of the burn site and spits out a diesel and gas mixture. The fire takes off from there and burns the entire plot. The plot on Tuesday was approximately 250 acres and Wednesday's was about 125 acres.
I got excited when I saw the big flames today, so I tried to take a self portrait, turned out pretty good!
Kari and Fire
The flames varied in size, so I got Scott in this picture for reference. At this point, the radiation from the fire made the heat hard to tolerate.
Scott and Fire
At the fire front, I looked up and got a great picture of the sky. Clear skies to the east and smoke to the west.
When a large plume has established, we launch another weather balloon to capture the moisture data I'm interested in. Here's me launching another balloon.
We noticed this on the way back from the fire. Green on one side of the road, burnt on the other!
The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.
Comments will take a few seconds to appear.