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Wildfires are often discovered by aircraft pilots, drivers or spotters in observation towers. Increasingly, remote sensors — on the ground, in the air and on board satellites — are alerting authorities when fires break out, and experts say technology will increasingly be a part of the future of firefighting.
A blaze that raged last August in a canyon near Los Angeles threatened vital communications links. Remote cameras gave firefighters crucial information to save the installations, said Troy Whitman of Southern California Edison, an electric utility company.
Whitman serves as a liaison with firefighting agencies, and he shares information from a new camera network that Edison installed throughout much of its service area. Those 13 million hectares are challenging, he said, “mountains, deserts, very remote areas where fires may not be detected for minutes, sometimes even days in the forest if it’s a lightning strike.”
More than 100 cameras provide a view of 60 percent of the company’s service area in Southern and Central California. More cameras are on their way, all monitored in an operations center in suburban Los Angeles, where remote spotters watch computer monitors and meteorologists track weather data from remote sensing stations.
Fires up and down the U.S. West Coast are getting fiercer, and 10 of California’s 20 most destructive blazes have occurred since 2015. A California report last month, “Wildfires and Climate Change,” said the state’s fire season has become nearly year-round, and one-quarter of the California’s population lives in fire-prone areas.
“Climate is changing,” said Brian Chen, who manages Edison’s wildfire mitigation efforts. “We’ve had many years of drought leading up to this, which has caused millions of trees across the state to die or be weakened because of disease,” he added. “We’ve also had a history of fire suppression policy, which has not kept our forests healthy,” he said.
More residents are also living closer to wilderness areas, in places like Paradise, a once idyllic northern California town destroyed by wildfire in November. At least 85 people died and 14,000 homes were destroyed by the so-called Camp Fire, which investigators announced Wednesday was sparked by the transmission lines of another utility, Pacific Gas and Electric.
At least half of the state’s most destructive 20 fires have been caused by power lines or electrical equipment, and spread because they started in isolated areas that were difficult for firefighters to reach. California fire officials say electrical mishaps account for a smaller proportion of all wildfires, and blame others on careless debris burning, out-of-control campfires, arson or smoking.
Southern California Edison is upgrading its infrastructure, replacing bare transmission lines with insulated cables. Pacific Gas and Electric also plans to install new cameras and weather stations. Both companies face lawsuits over recent wildfires, and Pacific Gas and Electric filed for bankruptcy in January, facing billions of dollars in claims.
Destructive fires are also tracked by NASA, the U.S. space agency, which also monitors the health of our planet using “aircraft observations … from manned aircraft and unmanned aircraft,” said Vince Ambrosia of NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California. He says the main focus today, however, is on satellite data retrieved by NASA and its partners, including the European Space Agency, and shared with the public and global firefighters. The information helps before, during and after a wildfire.
“We can do active fire detection,” said Natasha Stavros of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. “We can also do observations of the type of vegetation that’s there,” she said, assessing moisture content and how readily vegetation will burn.
She says an instrument called GEDI has been sent to the International Space Station to measure levels of biomass, the trees and brush that provide fuel for fires, by monitoring how forests store and release carbon. Other satellites track the height of flames and the spread of smoke and other pollutants.
Airborne and space-based sensors provide real-time data, and NASA and its partner agencies have built a “long-term collection library … going back to the 1980s to look at transitioning stages of wildfires throughout our last 50 years or so,” Ambrosia said.
Experts say that fire is part of nature’s ecosystem, but fire season is getting longer and fires more intense, and remote sensing helps firefighters deal with the challenge. The last month’s California report on wildfires recommends increased use of advanced imaging from the air and space, artificial intelligence to enhance data analysis, and a more comprehensive approach to fire prevention and response. (VOA)
South Korea remained the No. 2 supplier of popular content to Netflix in the fourth quarter of last year, US online media have reported. According to What's On Netflix, a private online site that provides information on Netflix content, on Wednesday (US time), South Korean-made shows accounted for 11.8 per cent of the top 10 films and TV series in the final three months of 2021.
ALSO READ: Lessons Learnt From Squid Game
Korean content thus ranked No. 2 for the second consecutive quarter after the United States, which accounted for 59 per cent, reports Yonhap News Agency. The figures are based on data by the streaming analytics firm FlixPatrol, it added. It marked a sharp increase from its share of 5.4 per cent for the third quarter, thanks to the breakout hit 'Squid Game', released on September 17, and other hit series.
South Korean-made shows accounted for 11.8 per cent of the top 10 films and TV series in the final three months of 2021. | Unsplash
"The fourth quarter of 2021 is likely to be an outlier with the arrival of 'Squid Game', but Korean content has been on a slow march up the charts regardless of 'Squid Game'," the report said. 'Squid Game' became the most successful Netflix show in history, with its total viewership reaching a record 1.65 billion hours in the first four weeks of its release.
Two subsequent series, the fantasy horror 'Hellbound' and the sci-fi thriller 'The Silent Sea', also topped Netflix's official weekly viewership chart for non-English TV shows. (IANS/ MBI)
(Keywords: squid game, netflix, series, US, Korea, quarter, content, history viewership, hellbound, the silent sea, chart)
There has been a significant growth in adoption as well as deepening of digital payments across the country, showed the Reserve Bank of India - Digital Payments Index (RBI-DPI) on Wednesday. Accordingly, the index reading for September 2021 rose to 304.06 (index value) from 270.59 in March 2021. "The RBI-DPI Index continues to demonstrate significant growth in adoption and deepening of digital payments across the country," the RBI said in a statement.
Starting from March 2018, the index stood at 153.47 in March 2019, 173.49 in September 2019. This improved to 207.84 in March 2020, 217.74 in September 2020 and further increased to 270.59 in March 2021. Earlier, the RBI had announced construction of the composite index with March 2018 as a base to capture the extent of digitisation of payments across the country.
Starting from March 2018, the index stood at 153.47 in March 2019, 173.49 in September 2019. | Wikimedia Commons
The RBI-DPI comprises of five broad parameters that enable measurement of deepening and penetration of digital payments in the country over different time periods.Notably, these parameters are 'payment enablers', 'payment infrastructure -- demand side factors', 'payment infrastructure -- suppy side factors', 'payment performance' and 'consumer centricity'.Each of these parameters have sub-parameters which, in turn, consist of various measurable indicators. (IANS/ MBI)
(Keywords: adoption, payment, reserve bank of india, infrastructure, growth, march, index, digital, country, parameters)
After an embarrassingly slow start to the crypto new year, the tides of the crypto machine are starting to change and with it, the investors of Avalanche and HUH Token have received some rather spectacular rewards.
The cryptocurrency market this week saw value increases of over 20% and that’s enough to signal to any crypto investor that things are going better in the crypto sphere than last weeks value increase percentages, which, for the most part, were on a downtrend.
But with the spirits of the cryptocurrency community well and truly perked up, it’s no wonder that hungry crypto investors like yourself are looking for the next bonus round of value increases.
What’s So Special About Avalanche?
You might be wondering how two altcoins, like Avalanche and HUH Token, have popped up on your deep search of the crypto sphere and it’s for good reason … these two cryptocurrencies saw an exponential increase in value this week and with it, have driven the crypto community crazy with investment potential.
It seems like the crypto bug has been biting and the crypto sphere is regaining its pre-New Year vigour.
Avalanche the low-cost, eco-friendly programmable smart contracts platform saw an astonishing 3,042% from that point and investors are rejoicing at their before-the-curve investment in an altcoin.
Though if the numbers and investment trends of 2021 are anything to go off, altcoins like Avalanche and HUH Token are becoming the prefered crypto choice for whale investors.
HUH Token are making steps in this direction with their play-to-earn game launching in February.Dailyhodi
Not many currencies saw such a drastic increase of value like Avalanche, and aside from its forward-thinking, inclusive crypto technology, this is one of the abilities that make Avalanche special.
Its continuing growth potential.
Never Heard Of HUH Token, HUH?
Now, this might not be true for the seasoned crypto lover reading this article, however for those of you who are new to the crypto sphere, HUH Token is the altcoin trailblazer that launched a little over a month ago.
Also Read: Will SafeMoon Be Eclipsed By HUH Token?
HUH Token saw an incredible increase and is set to see more value rises over the next month with its 500 wide influencer launch, play-to-earn launch and dropping their presale holders NFTs on the 31st of January.
It’s events like these that often cause value spikes in altcoins and for that reason, HUH holders are more than thrilled with Utimeme.
HUH Token is the blend of blockchain technology and holder-centric values that most investors crave because it allows them to have greater input over what happens to their well-earned money.
Like Avalanche, HUH Token is a currency that wants to bring a new kind of crypto investor to the market, and that’s one from any kind of financial background… HUH Token are making steps in this direction with their play-to-earn game launching in February.
These are some of the reasons that a bonus round for those who missed out on the crypto windfall of January 1st investors, could be around the corner.
Remember, it’s always best to do your research into crypto before investing and you can begin your search by visiting the links below or going to Avalanche and HUH Token websites.
Disclaimer: (This article is sponsored and includes some commercial links)