NASA’s Atmospheric Infrared Sounder, located on board the Aqua satellite, captured images of carbon monoxide plumes coming from California wildfires last week.
There were 28 major wildfires burning across the state as of Sept. 14, including the August Complex Fire, which started on Aug. 17 and has burned over 471,000 acres, making it the largest fire on record in California.
The animation shows three-day averages of carbon monoxide concentrations around three miles (five kilometers) up in the atmosphere between Sept. 6 and Sept. 14.
The red and orange areas indicate regions with extremely high carbon monoxide concentrations of greater than 350 parts per billion by volume. The more normal, background concentrations of carbon monoxide show up as yellow and green, with amounts between 30 and 50 ppbv.