Satellite remote sensing is regularly used for wildfire detection, fire severity mapping and burnt area mapping. Applications in the surveillance of wildfire using geostationary-based sensors have been limited by low spatial resolutions. With the launch in 2015 of the AHI (Advanced Himawari Imaginer) sensor on board Himawari-8, ten-minute interval imagery is available covering an entire earth hemisphere across East Asia and Australasia. Existing active fire detection algorithms depend on middle infrared (MIR) and thermal infrared (TIR) channels to detect fire. Even though sub-pixel fire detection algorithms can detect much smaller fires, the location of the fire within the AHI 2 × 2 km (400 ha) MIR/TIR pixel is unknown. This limits the application of AHI as a wildfire surveillance and tracking sensor. A new multi-spatial resolution approach is presented in this paper that utilizes the available medium resolution channels in AHI. The proposed algorithm is able to map firelines at a 500 m resolution. This is achieved using near infrared (NIR) (1 km) and RED (500 m) data to detect burnt area and smoke within the flagged MIR (2 km) pixel. Initial results based on three case studies carried out in Western Australia shows that the algorithm was able to continuously track fires during the day at 500 m resolution. The results also demonstrate the utility for wildfire management activities.
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