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Fire behavior characteristics in a pine needle fuel bed in northwest Africa

Miloua, Hadj
Journal of forestry research 2019 v.30 no.3 pp. 959-967
Pinus halepensis, Pinus pinaster, calorimetry, conifer needles, fire spread, fluid mechanics, forest fires, fuel bed, fuels, heat transfer, models, oxygen consumption, wind, Africa
This paper reports results of research to validate a fire behavior model “Wildland Fire Dynamics Simulator” through comparison of laboratory-scale measurements under the oxygen consumption calorimetry principle to several simulation runs of ground fire spreading in a fuel bed under wind. Pine needle ground covers of Pinus halepensis Mill. and Pinus pinaster Ait., two pine species in a specific region in northwest Africa were tested. In order to gain a deeper understanding of forest fire behavior, investigation into the rate of spread, one of the most relevant quantities used in forest fire science, is fundamental. Moreover, the heat release rate of the fire spread for different fuel types and related thermal functions such as radiant, convective and conductive heat transfer through beds of pine needles were quantified. The results can be helpful for the improvement and validation of the computational Fluid Dynamics CFD model and give global information on fire spread under wind on a bed of pine needles.