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BlueSky smoke modeling framework: design, application, and improvements

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Monday, 24 January 2011
BlueSky smoke modeling framework: design, application, and improvements
Washington State Convention Center
Tara Strand, New Zealand Forest Research Institute Limited, Rotorua, WA, New Zealand; and N. K. Larkin, S. Raffuse, R. Solomon, D. Sullivan, K. Craig, D. Pryden, M. Rorig, N. Wheeler, and L. Chinkin

Smoke from fire is a growing concern as air quality regulations tighten and public acceptance declines. The BlueSky Smoke Modeling Framework is a modular system that combines observational datasets and models to simulate smoke transport and dispersion from fire. To accomplish this, weather, fire, fuels, consumption, emissions, plume rise, and dispersion/chemistry models and data are linked through a modular framework that enables the various models and datasets to interoperate. Additionally, several different sources (either models or data) are available at each processing step, allowing flexibility in setup and usage. With recent developments, BlueSky is now incorporating more satellite data including a variety of fire information sources (through its companion SMARTFIRE fire information system), as well as measures of fuel loadings, fuel green-up and fuel moisture, fireconsumption (burn severity), and plume rise. Additionally, satellite-derived fire emissions (e.g. from fire radiative power calculations) are being added as a pathway choice. The combination of both satellite and ground based information streams allows direct comparison of different computational pathways and helps better define uncertainty and error estimations through a number of test case studies being analyzed by the Smoke and Emissions Model Intercomparison Project. Results of these comparisons help with future model development and improvements to the various real-time forecasting, emissions inventory, and research applications that utilize BlueSky.