NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is feeling the heat from a wildfire burning only a couple of miles away, but the research facility isn't under any immediate threat, officials have said.
The so-called Station fire is burning in the Angeles National Forest near homes on the northside of La Ca?ada Flintridge, according to news reports. The fire is about 2 miles from JPL.
Astronomer Mike Brown of Caltech snapped a picture of the fire's smoke plume from the 9th floor of the Caltech library, looking northeast towards downtown Pasadena and JPL.
"It looks to me like they are in a sea of calm between two different fires," Brown told SPACE.com.
For now, JPL officials are working with L.A. County firefighters and keeping an eye on the blaze. No evacuations have been ordered so far.
"The JPL fire dept. and other personnel are monitoring the fire, but there is no immediate danger of it reaching JPL," NASA spokeswoman Jane Platt told SPACE.com.
NASA officials posted this update on the JPL Web site:
"A major brush fire is still burning in the hills north of JPL.? JPL is not in any immediate danger.? The air quality in the area is very poor, and employees on the premises are being told to stop all outside work and remain inside."