Bush fires in Australia: NASA satellite captures hot spots

large bush fires burning in southwestern Victoria on February 18, 2013
Large bush fires burning in southwestern Victoria on February 18, 2013
Credits: NASA

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image showing large bush fires burning in southwestern Victoria on February 18, 2013. Red outlines indicate hot spots where MODIS detected unusually warm surface temperatures associated with fires. Winds blew a long plume of smoke south toward the Bass Strait.

About 300 firefighters using dozens of vehicles and 14 aircraft were battling the fires, which were burning near Grampians National Park. Lightning ignited a number of fires about a week ago; two of them merged to create the large fire shown here. Authorities estimated that it had burned about 6,000 hectares (15,000 acres) by Feb. 19.