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Article

The Impact of Fuel Treatments on Wildfire Behavior in North American Boreal Fuels: A Simulation Study Using FIRETEC

1
Canadian Forest Service, Northern Forestry Centre, 5320 122st, Edmonton, AB T6H 3S5, Canada
2
Los Alamos National Laboratory, Earth and Environmental Sciences Division, Los Alamos, NM 87545, USA
3
Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, 9718 107 St NW, Edmonton, AB T5K 2N6, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
This author has retired.
Received: 19 March 2020 / Revised: 23 May 2020 / Accepted: 27 May 2020 / Published: 5 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Boreal Fire-Fuels Interactions)
Current methods of predicting fire spread in Canadian forests are suited to large wildfires that spread through natural forests. Recently, the use of mechanical and thinning treatments of forests in the wildland-urban interface of Canada has increased. To assist in community wildfire protection planning in forests not covered by existing operational fire spread models, we use FIRETEC to simulate fire spread in lowland black spruce fuel structures, the most common tree stand in Canada. The simulated treatments included the mechanical mulching of strips, and larger, irregularly shaped areas. In all cases, the removal of fuel by mulch strips broke up the fuels, but also caused wind speed increases, so little decrease in fire spread rate was modelled. For large irregular clearings, the fire spread slowly through the mulched wood chips, and large decreases in fire spread and intensity were simulated. Furthermore, some treatments in the black spruce forest were found to be effective in decreasing the distance and/or density of firebrands. The simulations conducted can be used alongside experimental fires and documented wildfires to examine the effectiveness of differing fuel treatment options to alter multiple components of fire behavior. View Full-Text
Keywords: fire modeling; FIRETEC; fire behavior fire modeling; FIRETEC; fire behavior
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MDPI and ACS Style

Marshall, G.; Thompson, D.K.; Anderson, K.; Simpson, B.; Linn, R.; Schroeder, D. The Impact of Fuel Treatments on Wildfire Behavior in North American Boreal Fuels: A Simulation Study Using FIRETEC. Fire 2020, 3, 18. https://doi.org/10.3390/fire3020018

AMA Style

Marshall G, Thompson DK, Anderson K, Simpson B, Linn R, Schroeder D. The Impact of Fuel Treatments on Wildfire Behavior in North American Boreal Fuels: A Simulation Study Using FIRETEC. Fire. 2020; 3(2):18. https://doi.org/10.3390/fire3020018

Chicago/Turabian Style

Marshall, Ginny, Dan K. Thompson, Kerry Anderson, Brian Simpson, Rodman Linn, and Dave Schroeder. 2020. "The Impact of Fuel Treatments on Wildfire Behavior in North American Boreal Fuels: A Simulation Study Using FIRETEC" Fire 3, no. 2: 18. https://doi.org/10.3390/fire3020018

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