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Type: Report
Author(s): Roger D. Ottmar; Stephen P. Baker
Publication Date: 2007

The Fire and Environmental Research Applications Team (PNW Research Station) and the Fire Chemistry Project (RM Research Station) have completed the data collection and modeling for fuel consumption and smoke emissions during wildland fires in boreal forested types in Alaska. Forest floor reduction was measured at 24 black and white spruce and birch-aspen sites on 8 wildfires during the 2003 and 2004 fire season. Emissions were measured at 5 wildfires which included 8 of the sites where forest floor consumption was measured. A robust forest floor reduction equation was developed, as well as a set of emission factors for particulate matter, CO, CO2, CH4, NMHC. The double parameter forest floor consumption equation uses upper forest floor fuel moisture content and preburn forest floor depth as independent variables. Fuel moisture content of the upper forest floor can be obtained from forest floor samples that are collected, oven dried, and weighed to determine gravimetric fuel moisture content. Preburn forest floor depths require onsite measurements to be collected. The fuel consumption models and emission factors have been incorporated into Consume v 3.0, which estimates fuel consumption and emissions and was developed with support from the JFSP. Fuel consumption models and emission factors developed during this study enable Consume v 3.0 to predict the amount of fuel consumption, emissions, and heat release from the burning of forest floor material during wildland fires in Alaska and other boreal forest regions. Using these predictions, resource managers can determine when and where to conduct a prescribed burn or plan for a wildland fire for use to achieve desired objectives while reducing impacts on other resources.

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Link to this document (1.4 MB; pdf)
Citation: Ottmar, Roger D.; Baker, Stephen P. 2007. Forest floor consumption and smoke characterization in boreal forested fuelbed types of Alaska - Final Report to the Joint Fire Science Program. JFSP Project No. 03-1-3-08. Seattle, WA: USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station, Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory, Fire and Environmental Research Applications (FERA) Team. 43 p.

Cataloging Information

  • black spruce
  • boreal forest
  • Consume 3.0
  • duff consumption
  • duff moisture
  • feathermoss
  • forest floor consumption
  • Picea glauca
  • Picea mariana
  • white spruce
JFSP Project Number(s):
  • 03-1-3-08
Record Last Modified:
Record Maintained By: FRAMES Staff (
FRAMES Record Number: 606