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Spot fire : mechanisms analysis and modeling

Objective



SUMMARY
Forest fire spreading is sometimes speeded up by the "spot fire" phenomenon : burning particles transported by the convection column, can be at the origin of secondary fires, several hundreds meters beyond the main fire front.
This phenomenon has not been studied a lot in the past, especially in the spreading models, which are existing throughout the world, and which are presently under study in Europe. It has however severe repercussions on forest fire prevention and control strategy.

The objective of Saltus research project is thus to fill this gap, through analyzing, in the five Southern countries of European Union, this complexe phenomenon, which brings out numerous physical, biological, and atmospheric parameters.

To do so, two complementary approaches are proposed :

- the first one consists in developing a probabilistic model, based on a statistical study of a representative sample of 500 recent fires. This model will lead to a typology of situations favouring spot fires, and to an assessment of their quantitative importance.
- the second approach is based on an thorought analysis of the physical phenomena at stake. It will include theoretical studies, resorting to digital simulation, and a range of experiments, in the laboratory and through prescribed burning. The experiments will focus on particles emission and transport, and on the triggering of secondary fires. Digital simulation will only be used for particles transport.

The probabilistic model will be validated on an additional sample of fires, while the physical model will be directly validated from data collected on wild fires during their progression.

The objective of Saltus is then double :
- to imprcve the knowledge on spot fires, in order to integrate this phenomenon in decison-making at the level of forest fire prevention and regional planning.
- to develop pre-operationnal tools for spot fire simulation, meant to firefighters, fire managers and the different people or bodies in charge of this issue.

That is the reason why, during the three years of the programme, and within the five mediterranean countries, the Saltus partners will work in collaboration with a panel of users, which will follow and guide their research.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

CENTRE NATIONAL DU MACHINISME AGRICOLE, DU GENIE RURAL, DES EAUX ET DES FORETS
Address
Le Thonelet
13612 Aix-en-provence
France

Participants (9)

AGENCE MTDA SARL
France
Address
Avenue Du Club Hippique 298
13090 Aix En Provence
Association Espaces Forestiers Méditerranéens
France
Address
Les Plaines De Lambert
83670 Fox-amphoux
INSTITUTO SUPERIOR TECNICO
Portugal
Address
Avenida Rovisco Pais, Pav. Mecanica 1-2°
1049-001 Lisboa
Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria
Spain
Address
Km 7,Carretera De La Coruña
28040 Madrid
MEDITERRANEAN AGRONOMIC INSTITUTE OF CHANIA
Greece
Address

73100 Hania - Crete
Regione Autonoma Della Sardegna
Italy
Address
Via Biasi 9
09131 Cagliari
UNIVERSIDADE DE TRAS-OS-MONTES E ALTO DOURO
Portugal
Address
Quinta De Prados
5000-911 Vila Real
UNIVERSITE DE LA MEDITERRANEE D'AIX-MARSEILLE II
France
Address
Laboratoire Irphe-ioa, Parc Scientifique Et Techno
13288 Marseille
Xunta Galicia
Spain
Address
Km 4,Carretera De Marin
36080 Pontevedra