Even before the myth of Prometheus, fire played a crucial ecological role around the world. Numerous plant communities depend on fire to generate species diversity in both time and space. Without fire such ecosystems would become sterile monocultures. Recent efforts to prohibit fire in fire dependent communities have contributed to more intense and more damaging fires. For these reasons, foresters, ecologists, land managers, geographers, and environmental scientists are interested in the behavior and ecological effects of fires. This book will be the first to focus on the chemistry and physics of fire as it relates to the ways in which fire behaves and the impacts it has on ecosystem function. Leading international contributors have been recruited by the editors to prepare a didactic text/reference that will appeal to both advanced students and practicing professionals.


Advanced undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, researchers and policy makers in forestry, ecology, geography, plant sciences, environmental sciences, and land management.

Table of Contents

Contributors Preface Acknowledgments 1 Strengthening Fire Ecology's Roots I. Introduction II. Processes III. Transfer Rates and Budgets IV. Examples of Traditional vs. Proposed Approach References 2 Flames I. Introduction II. Basic Aspects of Combustion in Forest Fires III. Temperature, Velocity, Species Concentration, and Flame Height IV Premixed and Diffusion Flames V. Extinction of Diffusion Flames VI. Diffusion Flames and Scaling Analysis VII. Spreading Flames VIII. Structure of Flame Base IX. Conclusions Notation References 3 Combustion Chemistry and Smoke I. Introduction II. Fuel Chemistry and Combustion III. Smoke Production IV. Minimizing Smoke Production V. Conclusions References 4 Water Relations of Forest Fuels I. Introduction II. Forest Fuels III. Fuel Moisture Relationships IV. Moisture Content Estimation Notation Additional Reading References 5 Wildland Fire Spread Models I. Introduction II. Head Fire Rate of Spread (Physical Principles and their Mathematical Embodiment) III. Head Fire Rate of Spread: Australia IV. Head Fire Rate of Spread: United States V. Head Fire Rate of Spread: Canada VI. Smoldering VII. Whole Fire Modeling—Fire Shape Notation References 6 Wind-Aided Fire Spread I. Introduction II. Laboratory-Scale Setup III. Fire Spread Model IV. Preliminary Testing of the Model V. Test Results for the Effect of Wind Speed and Fuel Loading on the Rate of Fire Spread VI. Conclusions Notation Recommended Reading References 7 Fire Plumes I. Introduction II. Modeling Fire Temperature Maxima III. Plumes above Fires in a Cross Wind Notation References 8 Coupling Atmospheric and Fire Models I. Introductio


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© 2001
Academic Press
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About the editor

Edward Johnson

Affiliations and Expertise

University of Calgary, Canada


@qu:"...a rich summary of our current knowledge of several important aspects of forest fire science, from fuel dynamics to coupled atmosphere-fire modelling. ...The book's strength is as a state-of-the-art review of research on pyrolysis, flames, lightening, fuel-moisture dynamics, smoke, combustion chemistry, and more. ...My fire science students and colleagues use Forest Fires as a reference." @source:—Daniel Nepstad, Woods Hole Research Center, in NATURE (January 2002) @qu:"...a primary strength of this book is that you can find a larger number of state-of-the-art fire behavior and combustion topics covered in a single source. ...the book is an unmitigated success...a very strong book that will benefit most scientists interested in fire, including ecologists. ...Overall, I compliment the editors and authors for a job well done." @source:—-Marc D. Abrams, Pennsylvania State University, School of Forest Resources, in ECOLOGY (November 2001) @qu:"This book is authoritative, well written and abundantly referenced. ...a valuable resource on all the topics covered and is likely to remain so for many years. ...It is a book that researchers in fire ecology should be aware of and have access to." @source:—-John Ogden in ANNALS OF BOTANY (2001)