Two meteorological satellites have spotted 282 “fire points” in the forests surrounding Uttarakhand within seven days in the month of May, officials from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said.
The satellites, INSAT-3D and INSAT-3DR equipped to detect and monitor natural hazards like forest-fires, spotted the fires from May 15 to 22.
“It is very common for fires to erupt in Uttarakhand during this time of the year given the weather. After the fires are detected we upload the photos on our website and inform the government,” said Tapan Misra, director, Space Applications Centre (SAC), an arm of ISRO, which contributed in developing these two satellites.
“Both INSAT-3D and INSAT-3DR are geostationary satellites. They take images every 15 minutes. Currently, there are about 50 major fires in the Uttarakhand region,” Misra said.
However, Misra said that the number of fires spotted this season is less compared to those spotted in 2016.