Workshop: Real Time Detection and Tracking of Fires that Matter

What is needed, what is possible, how do we build it?

March 11 - 12, 2021
California Institute of Technology - Pasadena, CA 91125

Workshop Overview:

In this workshop, we build on findings from the Moore Foundation Fire Immediate Response Workshop and do a deep dive to investigate innovation for detecting and tracking costly fires that affect human life, infrastructure, and the Earth system. The purpose is to coordinate a plan to efficiently integrate the increasing capabilities of the private sector and nonprofits with diverse government actors for effective fire detection and fire progression tracking from the wildland urban interface to the wildlands. Satellite capabilities are quickly maturing and technology is moving insurance and risk management from responding to catastrophic events to proactive risk mitigation. In the near-term, development is needed to synchronize ground, air and space data collection during active fire to close existing gaps and avoid redundancy thereby more effectively and efficiently delivering key and timely information to decision makers.

Thursday, March 11, 2021


Zoom link live to allow participants to settle in and check audio and video

8:00 - 8:10

Introduction and Welcome

Tom Prince - Keck Institute for Space Studies

George Whitesides - Virgin Galactic

8:10 - 8:40

Attendee Introductions
(Name, organization, what you hope to get out of the workshop)

8:45 - 8:55

Key Findings from the 2019 Moore Foundation Fire Immediate Response Workshop

Harvey Fineberg - Moore Foundation
8:55 - 9:15

The Wicked Wildfire Problem and Solution Space (video)

Natasha Stavros - CU Boulder
9:15 - 9:30

Google Research: Analysis of Detection Platform Options

Chris Van Arsdale - Google
9:30 - 10:00

Lightning Talks:
Interagency Fire Detection Strategy, Coordination, and Sustainment Business Models

Vince Ambrosia - NASA HQEverett Hinkley - USFS

Jessica Morse - CA Natural Resources

Mike Pavolonis - NOAA

10:00 - 10:15


10:15 - 10:45

Lightning Talks:
Frontline Capability Needs

Phillip Selegue - CALFIRE

Joaquin Ramirez - Technosylva

Kate Dargan - Intterra

Dave Winnacker - Moraga-Orinda Fire Protection District

Everett Hinkley - USFS

10:45 - 10:50

Breakout Session Instructions

Michele Judd - Keck Institute for Space Studies
10:50 - 11:50

Breakout Session:
Five groups with ~6-8 people in each and each addresses one of the questions to meet sub-objective to definehigh-level driving objectives for developing an observing system

• What are the use cases and driving capability needs (e.g., 15 min repeat, 100 m pixel, latency of 15 minutes or less)? Joaquin Ramirez - Tecnosylva
• What are the data management needs? What are the data access and distribution needs (e.g., tools and software)? Kate Dargan - Intterra
• What are the data science (ML/AI) needs to turn data into useful information? Jack Dangermond - Esri
• What can federal and state agencies do to enable better collaboration that breaks through traditional funding silos? If needed, how can new systems best be paid for? Teresa Feo - CA Council on Science and Technology
• What are the best ways for private companies to interact with the government to productively engage on the fire detection problem? What is needed? Robbie Schingler - Planet
11:50 - 12:00 Break
12:00 - 12:30 Summary Back in Plenary
5 min Each Breakout Group
Closing Remarks for Day 1
Moderators and Team Leads
12:30 End of Workshop Day 1
12:30 Zoom and Breakout Rooms Remain Open for Informal Collaboration All Afternoon

Friday March 12, 2021


Zoom link live to allow participants to settle in and check audio and video

8:00 - 8:05

Welcome Back and Overview of Day Ahead

George Whitesides - Virgin Galactic

8:05 - 8:20

Defining the Technical Possibility Space (sensitivity, resolution, power, platform) to Addressing Day 1 Capability Needs (platform agnostic) and Possible Sensors

Chip Miller - JPL
8:20 - 8:50

Lightning Talks: Innovating in Fire Detection and Business Models

Doug Morton - NASA GSFC

Mike Alvarez - Ecliptic Enterprises

Tim Ball - Fireball International

Dan Selz - XPRIZE

Tom Ingersoll - EDF

8:50 - 9:15

Lightning Talks: Nascent Systems, Capabilities, and Manufacturing Lines

Keith Sheu - Tap Labs

Karen O’Connor - Minderoo

Robbie Schingler - Planet

Josh Johnston - CSA

9:15 - 9:30

Break (with individual meeting rooms, if desired)

9:30 - 10:30

Breakout Session:
Five groups with ~6-8 people in each and each addresses one of the questions to meet sub-objective to outlinea plan for developing such an observing system

• How do we work together across organizations? What is needed to bring the many together in a coordinated approach? What are the next steps? Harvey Fineberg - Moore Foundation
• What observing system technology do we recommend? What are the next steps? Chip Miller - JPL
• What if any R&D is required for that observing system? What are the next steps? Natasha Stavros - CU Boulder
• How would such a system or systems be initially paid for? What are the next steps? George Whitesides - Virgin Galactic
• What is the sustainment model — e.g., the ongoing ‘business model'? What are the next steps? John Wardman - AXA XL
10:30 - 10:45


10:45 - 11:45

Summary and Full Discussion in Plenary
5 min Each Breakout Group

Moderators and Team Leads
11:45 - 12:30

Day 2 Summary and Going Forward Plan

Team Leads
12:30 Workshop Concludes

Workshop Participants:

  • Michael Alvarez - Ecliptic Enterprises Corporation
  • Vincent Ambrosia - NASA HQ
  • Christopher Anderson- Salo Sciences
  • Tim Ball - Fireball Information Technologies, LLC
  • Genevieve Biggs - Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
  • Jack Dangermond - Esri
  • Kate Dargan - Intterra
  • Amy DeCastro - CU Boulder Department of Geography/ Earth Lab/ National Center for Atmospheric Research
  • Teresa Feo - California Council on Science and Technology
  • Harvey Fineberg - Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
  • Andrea Gilbert - The Aerospace Corporation
  • Ron Glumb - L3 Harris Technologies
  • Mitch Goldberg - NOAA/NESDIS
  • Mark Hazelgren - Executive Office of the President
  • Everett Hinkley - USDA Forest Service
  • Virginia Iglesias - University of Colorado
  • Thomas Ingersoll - MethaneSAT LLC
  • Joshua Johnston - Canadian Forest Service
  • Chris Justice - University of Maryland
  • Parimal Kopardekar - NASA NARI
  • Charles Miller - JPL
  • Jessica Morse - California Natural Resources Agency
  • Douglas Morton - NASA GSFC
  • Karen O'Connor - Minderoo Foundation
  • Thomas Pagano - JPL/ California Institute of Technology
  • Michael Pavolonis - NOAA
  • Rania Poullos - Minderoo Foundation, Fire and Flood Resilience Initiative
  • Tom Prince - California Institute of Technology
  • Joaquin Ramirez - Technosylva Inc.
  • David Schimel - JPL
  • Robbie Schingler - Planet Labs
  • Phillip SeLegue - CAL FIRE
  • Daniel Selz - XPRIZE
  • Keith Sheu - SpaceForce
  • Natasha Stavros - University of Colorado Boulder
  • John Turner - Space Development Agency
  • Christopher Van Arsdale - Google
  • Aude Vignelles - Australian Space Agency
  • John Wardman - AXA XL
  • George Whitesides - Virgin Galactic
  • Dave Winnacker - Morage-Orinda Fire Protection District