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Experimental investigation of fire propagation in single live shrubsAuthor(s): Jing Li; Shankar Mahalingam; David R. Weise
Source: International Journal of Wildland Fire. 26(1): 58-70
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
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DescriptionThis work focuses broadly on individual, live shrubs and, more specifically, it examines bulk density in chaparral and its combined effects with wind and ignition location on the resulting fire behaviour. Empirical functions to predict bulk density as a function of height for 4-year-old chaparral were developed for two typical species of shrub fuels in southern California, USA, namely chamise (Adenostoma fasciculatum Hook & Arn.) and manzanita (Arctostaphylos spp. Adans.). Fuel beds of chamise foliage and small-diameter branches were burned in an open-topped wind tunnel. Three levels of bulk density, two ignition locations and two wind speeds were examined, focusing on overall fire behaviour. Mean maximum mass loss rate, elapsed time at which maximum mass loss rate occurred, flame height, flame angle, peak gas temperature and its peak change rate were measured. The mean maximum mass loss rate was not significantly affected by wind speed, ignition location, bulk density or moisture content. Both wind speed and ignition location significantly affected the time that maximum mass loss rate occurred. Only wind speed affected flame height and flame angle. The peak gas temperature within the shrub burning area was found to be mostly affected by the bulk density.
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CitationLi, Jing; Mahalingam, Shankar; Weise, David R. 2017. Experimental investigation of fire propagation in single live shrubs. International Journal of Wildland Fire. 26(1): 58-70.
Keywordsbulk density, chamise, fire behavior, live fuel, manzanita, southern California, wildland fire
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