Eighth Symposium on Fire and Forest Meteorology


Relationships between fire growth and available energy

Brian Potter, USDA Forest Service, Seattle, WA

The energy released by a fire is limited to the kinetic and potential energy present in the atmosphere and the chemical energy of the fuels at the time of the fire. The total of these provides an upper limit, but the behavior of the fire as measured in intensity or areal growth may or may not be closely linked to the total available energy. Completeness of the combustion reaction and the realization of convective potential energy are two examples of factors that may moderate any relationship between the energies and measures of the fire. I will present analyses of the relationships among the energy reservoirs and fire growth, including some consideration of factors influencing efficiency of energy conversion or transfer. The analysis employs observed fire growth data, observed atmospheric data and modeled atmospheric data.

wrf recording  Recorded presentation

Session 6, Impacts of Weather and Climate on Wildfire
Wednesday, 14 October 2009, 10:30 AM-12:00 PM, Ballroom B

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