Canadian Forest Service Publications

Temporal variations in elliptical forest fire shapes. 1989. McAlpine, R.S. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 19(11): 1496-1500.

Year: 1989

Issued by: Northern Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 11288

Language: English

Availability: Order paper copy (free), PDF (request by e-mail)

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Abstract

Elliptical fire growth models are dependant on a relationship between the length to width ratio of the ellipse and the prevailing wind speed. A laboratory study of point source fires growing in two fuel types (Ponderosa Pine (Pinusponderosa Laws.) needle litter and excelsior) showed that the length to width ratio changes from the time of inception until a stabilized "equilibrium" eccentricity is established. The size of fuel bed required to allow stabilization of the length to width ratio is dependant on wind speed. Results indicate that a fuel bed 0.93 m wide is insufficient to allow length to width ratio stabilization for wind speeds above 1.6 km/h.