Israeli researchers develop remote algorithm to assess damage caused by arson balloons

2021-06-28 14:35:15 GMT2021-06-28 22:35:15(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

JERUSALEM, June 28 (Xinhua) -- Israeli researchers have developed a remote sensing algorithm to identify and assess fire destruction caused by incendiary devices such as arson balloons, kites and Molotov cocktails, the Ben Gurion University (BGU) in southern Israel said on Monday.

The new algorithm, called AFRI (aerosol free vegetation index), analyzes satellite images to see through even heavy smoke cover and locate damaged areas.

By using the algorithm, the researchers determined that during the recent fighting between the Israeli army and the Gaza's ruler Hamas, about 3,200 acres of Israeli forest, reserves and farmland were burned around Gaza.

Various incendiary devices have been launched from the Gaza Strip to Israeli southwestern villages near the border, causing extensive damage since 2018.

The algorithm can also serve to help firefighters map fire-scarred areas safely and efficiently, BGU added. Enditem