Sudbury

Research group tracks movement of forest fire smoke

Forest fires burning in northern Ontario are prompting heavy smoke throughout the region. Some communities have had special air quality statements issued by Environment Canada.

Website uses data from NASA to track where smoke will travel

Fire Smoke Canada posts information about smoke from forest fires. (Submitted by Fire Smoke Canada)

Forest fires burning in northern Ontario are prompting heavy smoke throughout the region. Some communities have had special air quality statements issued by Environment Canada.

Now, you can see how the smoke is moving and where it is expected to move next.

Fire Smoke Canada is posting the information on its website. 

Christopher Rodell, a research assistant at the University of British Columbia and researcher for the project says they get their data from a NASA satellite.

"We get heat signatures from that and these heat signatures determine how smoke will rise based off of numerical weather prediction models we have created," he said.

"It's an ongoing research project. We are trying to emulate how smoke plumes, a byproduct of wildfires disperses across North America."

Rodell says the site isn't intended to be used for medical purposes.

If people with respiratory concerns have questions about air quality, they can contact their local health unit or family doctor.

In the summer of 2018, heavy smoke was reported across northeastern Ontario due to several major forest fires. (Submitted by Fire Smoke Canada)

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