A NASA satellite that launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base more than 20 years ago has captured a view of the large amount of smoke from California’s many wildfires.
The Terra Earth-observation spacecraft image, from the NASA Worldview website application, the agency measured the smoke trail, stretching 1,214 miles from the northeast to the southwest.
That trail has moved as far north as Pocatello, Idaho and southwest as the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California.
Terra, the flagship of NASA’s fleet of Earth-observing satellites fleet, launched aboard the West Coast’s inaugural Atlas IIAS rocket in December 1999.
The craft, the size of a school bus, carried five instruments designed to collect assorted data about the planet.
In October 2018, NASA representatives noted that Terra had marked the completion of 100,000 orbits around the Earth as the spacecraft continues to far exceed its designed life span of six years.
Smoke also has blanketed much of Santa Barbara County, prompting an air quality warning, although the fires are burning 100 miles away.
CalFire has said an above-normal fire risk will persist through October for Northern California.
In Southern California, normal fire potential is expected across the region in August and September, but there will be an above-normal large fire potential from the mountains westward in October and November due to wind events.
On Friday, nearly 12,000 firefighters were battling 22 major fires across the state, CalFire said.
Since Saturday, CalFire reported 12,000 lightning strikes. During the same period, the state saw more than 560 wildfires, most of which had been contained by firefighters.
As of Friday morning, CalFire said the blazes have burned more than 771,000 acres.
— Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.