These MODIS Airborne Simulator images, acquired on June 24, 2003, show the site of the Aspen Fire in true color (top) and, using the sensor’s infrared detectors, false color (bottom). Whereas much of the surface detail is obscured by smoke in the top scene, notice how much detail on the surface is revealed in the bottom image. Untouched vegetated land surface appears green, bare rock and land surface look orange-brown, the smoldering scar left by recently-burned areas shows up as crimson, and the actively-burning fire front is the bright red-orange ribbon around the burn scar’s perimeter. The most intense fire fronts visible in this image can be seen both to the north and south of the burned area, as well as along much of the western perimeter.
Image courtesy Rose Dominguez, NASA Ames Research Center