On August 14, 2003, the Seattle Forestry Sciences Laboratory was re-named as its fire research program and partnerships grew. The new name, "Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory," highlights the lab's fire science leadership.
Research questions cover the impact of fire on air quality and visibility, wildfire and ecology research, the effects of fire on air, impacts of smoke on human health, and social science (rural and urban wildland interface). We study a wide variety of wildland fire topics: fire behavior, combustion science, biomass assessments, fire ecology, fire management, prescribed fires, fire-climate change interactions, landscape ecology, emissions of greenhouse gases, fire policy, and traditional fire use by indigenous communities.
The Pacific Northwest Research Station's Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Lab is located in the heart of the Fremont District in Seattle, Washington. Close proximity to the University of Washington facilitates joint research with the University of Washington Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory.
About 21 station scientists and support staff work at the lab, pursuing a range of scientific inquiry across disciplines including pyrology, hydrology, meteorology, sociology, forestry, and more. The lab frequently hosts visiting scientists and post-graduate fellows through partnership with the University of Washington (UW). A number of UW faculty researchers and graduate students sit at the PNW Research Station's Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Lab.