California Finishes Trials of New Wildfire Aircraft

Intel 24 was recently used over a wildfire in Malibu

 

(CBS Los Angeles, YouTube)

 

Wildland Firefighter Staff

ORANGE COUNTY, California – California has just finished trials on a new aircraft that may be used to help fight the state’s wildfires.

Intel 24 is able to see through smoke using infrared and radar technology.

Equipment inside the aircraft can transmit live images to incident commanders on the ground and help predict fire movement using artificial intelligence.

“The big difference is we are responding immediately. We are not waiting for requests,” Chief Brian Fennessy of the Orange County Fire Authority told CBS Los Angeles. “We are communicating with the decision-makers from Sacramento all the way down to the firefighter in the back of his suburban, making decisions on the incident in front of him.”

Intel 24 was used during a wildfire in Malibu over the weekend.

Infrared cameras on-board map the perimeter. Then a supercomputer at the University of California, San Diego maps weather and wind to predict where the fire may head.

The state has approved keeping Intel 24 in service with one in Southern California and one in Northern California for the future.

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