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Development and validation of fuel height models for terrestrial lidar – RxCADRE 2012

Rowell, Eric M., Seielstad, Carl A., Ottmar, Roger D.
The International journal of wildland fire 2016 v.25 no.1 pp. 38-47
fuels (fire ecology), lidar, models, Florida
Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) was used to collect spatially continuous measurements of fuelbed characteristics across the plots and burn blocks of the 2012 RxCADRE experiments in Florida. Fuelbeds were scanned obliquely from plot/block edges at a height of 20m above ground. Pre-fire blocks were scanned from six perspectives and four perspectives for post-fire at ~2cm nominal spot spacing. After processing, fuel height models were developed at one meter spatial resolution in burn blocks and compared with field measurements of height. Spatial bias is also examined. The resultant fuel height data correspond closely with field measurements of height and exhibit low spatial bias. They show that field measurements of fuel height from field plots are not representative of the burn blocks as a whole. A translation of fuel height distributions to specific fuel attributes will be necessary to maximise the utility of the data for fire modelling.