Jasmine Innocent, Duncan Sutherland, Nazmul Khan, K. A. M. Moinuddin
Year Published:

Cataloging Information

Fire Behavior
Simulation Modeling

NRFSN number: 25490
FRAMES RCS number: 68071
Record updated: May 10, 2023

This study focuses on physics-based modelling of grassfire behaviour over flat and sloped terrains through a set of field-scale simulations performed using the Wildland–urban Interface Fire Dynamics Simulator (WFDS), with varying wind speeds (12.5, 6 and 3 m s−1) and slope angles (-30° to +30°). To ensure the accuracy of this Large Eddy Simulation (LES), a sensitivity study was carried out to select the converged domain and grid sizes. Fire isochrones, locations of fire front, dynamic and quasi-steady rates of spread (RoS), and fire intensity results from the simulations are presented. Within the simulations conducted, the RoS and fire intensity were found to be higher with increasing slope angles, as well as with wind velocity. RoS comparisons are made with various empirical models. At different slope angles and driving wind velocities, different empirical quasi-steady RoS broadly match with particular dynamic maximum, minimum and averaged RoS values from this study. It appears that the ideal nature of grassfire propagation simulation and challenges related to measuring quasi-steady values in experimental studies are likely reasons for the observed differences. Additionally, for lower wind velocities, the RoS–fire intensity relationship (Byram’s) deviates from linearity for greater upslopes.


Innocent, Jasmine; Sutherland, Duncan; Khan, Nazmul; Moinuddin, Khalid A. M. 2023. Physics-based simulations of grassfire propagation on sloped terrain at field scale: motivations, model reliability, rate of spread and fire intensity. International Journal of Wildland Fire 32(4):496-512.

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