Skip to main content
A. Bakhshaii, E. A. Johnson
Year Published:

Cataloging Information

Fire Behavior
Simulation Modeling

NRFSN number: 19732
Record updated:

One of the first significant developments in wildfire modeling research was to introduce heat flux as wildfire line intensity (kW·m–1). This idea could be adapted to using weather station measurements, topography, and fuel properties to estimate rate of fire spread, shape, and intensity. This review will present, in an accessible manner, the next evolution in wildfire models. The new generation models use mechanistic combustion models and large-eddy simulation (LES) to define the flaming combustion and the mechanism of rate of spread. These wildfire models are then coupled to a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) or mesoscale weather model. In other words, wildfire models become weather and climate models with add-in fuel and terrain models. These coupled models can use existing fire and weather physics or developed noncoupled models with a coupling mechanism. These models are tailored for specific spatial and temporal scales.


Bakhshaii A, Johnson EA. 2019. A review of a new generation of wildfire–atmosphere modeling. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 49(6): 565-574.

Access this Document


publication access with no paywall

Check to see if this document is available for free in the USDA Forest Service Treesearch collection of publications. The collection includes peer reviewed publications in scientific journals, books, conference proceedings, and reports produced by Forest Service employees, as well as science synthesis publications and other products from Forest Service Research Stations.