Fire behaviour symposium

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Fire behaviour prediction is critical to the effective management of a bushfire. Models of bushfire behaviour need to accurately describe the likely fire environment and the level of uncertainty to enable fire managers to have a better understanding of the likely consequences of their actions both before and during a fire.

2013 marked the 60th anniversary of the employment by CSIRO of the first full-time bushfire behaviour researcher, Alan McArthur. In that time huge advances have occurred in our knowledge of how bushfires behave.

This symposium presented the current state of the science of fire behaviour prediction in Australia for the operational practitioner.

The symposium showcased many of the recent advances in knowledge, understanding and tools that have been made since McArthur’s day, covering fire behaviour models, fuels, fuel moisture, fire weather, and fire spread simulation.

The event was run by CSIRO, in partnership with the Bushfire CRC, ACT Parks and Conservation, ACT Rural Fire Serivce and NSW Rural Fire Service.

View entire talks from the symposium below


Phil Cheney - Fire behaviour - McArthur beginnings to the present
Joe Buffone - Keynote: Fire science in the control room 
Jeff Kepert - New tools for fire weather forecasting
Sarah Chadwick - Weather information for prescribed burning 
Stuart Matthews - Linking weather to fuel availability 
Andrew Stark - What are practitioners needs 
Lachie McCaw - Application of visual fuel hazard assessments to fire behaviour prediction 
Simon Heemstra - Role of fuel - practitioner 
Mike Wotton - Fire behaviour: next gen Canadian Forest Fire Danger Rating System 
Matt Plucinski - Fire occurrence 
Andrew Sullivan for Peter Ellis - Fire brands and spot ignition 
Andrew Sullivan - Grassland fire behaviour 
Wendy Anderson - Shrubland and mallee-heath fires 
Jim Gould - Fire growth and development in eucalypt forest fires

Miguel Cruz - A model for fire propagation and vertical transitions in eucalypt forests 
Kevin Tolhurst - PHOENIX RapidFire 
Adrian Allen - AURORA  
Geoff Cary - Landscape fire regime modelling with FIRESCAPE 
Miguel Cruz - Error uncertainty in fire spread predictions 
Kevin Tolhurst - The role of the FBAN 
Brian Simpson - Closing Keynote: The operational reality and the future fire research need 
Neil Cooper - Closing the symposium 


News from the Event

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