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Moisture Sorption Models for Fuel Beds of Standing Dead Grass in Alaska

Bureau of Land Management, Alaska Fire Service, 1541 Gaffney Road, Fort Wainwright, AK 99703, USA
Received: 5 November 2018 / Revised: 19 December 2018 / Accepted: 20 December 2018 / Published: 23 December 2018
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Abstract

Sorption models were developed to predict the moisture content in fuelbeds of standing dead grass from ambient weather measurements. Intuition suggests that the response time of standing dead grass to diurnal changes in weather is negligible and that moisture content tracks the equilibrium moisture content under most field conditions. This assumption suggests that moisture content could be modelled by empirically fitting coefficients to equations of equilibrium moisture content using field measurements. Here, six equations commonly used in wildland fire management and other industries were fit using 293 measurements of weather and moisture content in standing dead grass from Alaska, U.S.A. Predictors were air temperature and either relative humidity or dewpoint depression. Mean absolute errors of the best three models were approximately 1.16% of moisture content. The models predicted well the moisture content of an independently collected dataset from Canada but less so a set from Australia. The models may be used in wildland fire danger rating and fire behavior prediction systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: fine dead fuel moisture; equilibrium moisture content; fire danger rating; fire behavior prediction; moisture diffusion; moisture exchange fine dead fuel moisture; equilibrium moisture content; fire danger rating; fire behavior prediction; moisture diffusion; moisture exchange
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Miller, E.A. Moisture Sorption Models for Fuel Beds of Standing Dead Grass in Alaska. Fire 2019, 2, 2.

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