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Type: Journal Article
Author(s): Thomas J. Duff; Robert E. Keane II; Trent D. Penman; Kevin G. Tolhurst
Publication Date: 2017

Wildland fires are a function of properties of the fuels that sustain them. These fuels are themselves a function of vegetation, and share the complexity and dynamics of natural systems. Worldwide, the requirement for solutions to the threat of fire to human values has resulted in the development of systems for predicting fire behaviour. To date, regional differences in vegetation and independent fire model development has resulted a variety of approaches being used to describe, measure and map fuels. As a result, widely different systems have been adopted, resulting in incompatibilities that pose challenges to applying research findings and fire models outside their development domains. As combustion is a fundamental process, the same relationships between fuel and fire behaviour occur universally. Consequently, there is potential for developing novel fuel assessment methods that are more broadly applicable and allow fire research to be leveraged worldwide. Such a movement would require broad cooperation between researchers and would most likely necessitate a focus on universal properties of fuel. However, to truly understand fuel dynamics, the complex biotic nature of fuel would also need to remain a consideration—particularly when looking to understand the effects of altered fire regimes or changing climate.

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Citation: Duff, Thomas J.; Keane, Robert E.; Penman, Trent D.; Tolhurst, Kevin G. 2017. Revisiting wildland fire fuel quantification methods: the challenge of understanding a dynamic, biotic entity. Forests 8(9):351.

Cataloging Information

Alaska    California    Eastern    Great Basin    Hawaii    Northern Rockies    Northwest    Rocky Mountain    Southern    Southwest    International    National
  • bushfire
  • flammability
  • forest fire
  • fuel assessment
  • grassfire
  • quantitative analysis
  • vegetation dynamics
  • wildland fire
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Record Maintained By: FRAMES Staff (
FRAMES Record Number: 24888