Insitu Pacific supported the New South Wales Rural Fire Service by contributing to a part of a ground-breaking documentary that aired on SBS in November last year entitled Bushfires: Inside the Inferno. This documentary explored Australia’s devastating history with bushfires and how we fight them. Insitu Pacific’s ScanEagle flew over a active firefront at night time, the first mission where these aircraft had been used for this purpose. We were able to stream images back to the command centre in real time and provide fire fighters with crucial information for decision making and asset management.

Read the full SBS press release below.

Bushfires – Inside The Inferno

2-part Australian documentary series, Wednesday 5 & 12 November 2014, 8.30pm on SBS ONE

2013 was like a window into the future. This isn’t the typical summer we are going to see in 2030. It’s going to get worse.’ – heatwave expert Sarah Perkins

Nowhere is as ravaged by fire as Australia. 2013 was the hottest year on record and our land was ablaze. Australia has the largest firefighting force in the world with a volunteer army of over 200,000 – double that of the military. More than a million Australians have built homes in fire zone areas. To live in Australia is to experience the devastating fury of bushfires.

Our bushfire season commences earlier and earlier and on the verge of another sweltering summer, the battle rages as we go Inside the Inferno in this 2-part documentary series exploring the deadly natural enemy that affects us all.

Bushfires – Inside The Inferno is the most comprehensive examination ever attempted of the science of Australian bushfires.

This series investigates mega fires from all angles, delving into the work of meteorologists studying Australia’s weather patterns and the scientists on the

cutting-edge of astoundingly sophisticated fire fighting technology. It incorporates the first-hand accounts of rangers, firefighters and survivors from some of the nation’s most devastating blazes including Ash Wednesday in 1983, the Blue Mountains last year, Victoria’s Black Saturday in 2009 and the Canberra fires of 2003, with exclusive access to the world’s largest fire fighting organisations; the front line heroes of the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) and Victoria’s Country Fire Authority (CFA).

Bushfires – Inside The Inferno takes cameras into the terrifying heart of the fire to capture spectacular never before seen footage. Witness first-hand as flames engulf a fire truck, the astounding precision of a water-bombing helicopter, and a firefighter’s point-of-view through helmet cam as he scrambles to evacuate residents with flames on their doorstep.

Part One: Built to Burn

Part one focuses on the science of bushfires, and why Australia’s blazes are so hard to contain. Inside the CSIRO’s state of the art fire lab, a combustion wind tunnel allows scientists to study how Eucalypt trees are built to burn and can carry embers up to 20 km. Meteorologist Magdalena Roze explains how south-east Australia’s climate patterns create a time bomb for fires to ignite. A heat wave expert reveals that summer 2013-14 broke 156 records in just 90 days with most capital cities recording their highest temperatures and consistent heat waves.

Bringing together predictive science techniques is the Phoenix Rapid Fire Model, developed by a crack team of scientists at Melbourne University which can anticipate how a fire will shift and expand.

Part Two: On the Frontline

 In recent years fire-fighting has been revolutionised with an array of technology, much of it making the transition from warzone to the fire zone. The Erickson aircrane is able to suck up 9,000 litres of water in just 45 seconds and with the nickname ‘Elvis’ is a rockstar of modern firefighting. The FLIR – Forward Looking Infrared Camera can see through haze and smoke to pinpoint burning hotspots. The fight has gone intergalactic as laser based satellites are called into battle and fires can now be detected with high accuracy from space. Witness Australia’s first drone test as it flies over a fire at night providing real time data on the movement of a blaze. Finally, an Aboriginal leader explains how ancient fire management through traditional burning may be just as, or more, effective than these hi-tech methods.

Join the conversation on Twitter #SBSDoco

For more media information and interviews, please contact:

Emma Losco T: 02 9430 3538 E: emma.losco@sbs.com.au

Learn more about the series at http://insidetheinferno.com.au/