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Prediction of wildland-urban interface fires using a digital twin

XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022









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    LIDAR image–based fuel construction in a computational fluid dynamics simulation domain
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    LiDAR image-based vegetation fuel construction in a computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulation domain was investigated. Using LiDAR images to convey fuel information to CFD would improve the accuracy of wildfire spread prediction. The obtained vegetation information using LiDAR appears as point signals in LiDAR images, and the point signals were dispatched to nodes using the K-D tree algorithm. Then, each node is transferred to the meshing algorithm along with the number of signals and location information. In a CFD domain, 3-dimension vegetation fuel information is reconstructed, and fuel mass is estimated by using the number of signals within each mesh. It appears that utilizing LiDAR images to obtain fuel information improves the accuracy in fuel shapes and mass distribution compared to the conventional way that assigns pre-determined shape and mass distribution for each vegetation. It is expected that the outcomes of this research would improve the liability of CFD-based wildfire prediction. Keywords: Sustainable forest management, Research, Climate change ID: 3617419
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    Ecohydrology-based management as a tool for preventing wildfires in the Mediterranean urban interface area
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    The adaptation to climate change of forest areas with intense anthropic pressure requires innovative management models characterized by an increasingly efficient use of available resources. In Mediterranean areas, the most intense and persistent droughts alter the water relations in the soil-plant-atmosphere (SPA) continuum and therefore the flammability of the vegetation and the risk of wildfires. The main aim of this work is to present the potential of using detailed information characterizing the SPA for estimating key variables used for forest fire prevention. To this end, physiological, ecohydrological and meteorological measurements (water potential, soil/plant water content, sap flow, etc.) are carried out to model the response of live fuel moisture content (LFMC) to environmental conditions in representative Aleppo pine plots located in a forested area close to Valencia city (Spain). In addition, spectral indexes estimated from Sentinel bands (NDVI, EVI, NDMI, MSI, RGR, BSI and NDWI) are also tested for obtaining the spatio-temporal dynamics of LFMC at the forestscale. The results show the importance of assessing LFMC along the entire hydrological year due to its variation with phenology: minimum values are obtained at the beginning of spring (81.3%, 64mm of soil water content in the profile and 0.2Kpa of VPD) vs. 90.1% during the driest environmental (summer) conditions (18mm of soil water content and 1.9Kpa of VPD). Combining physiological and environmental predictors provides good estimations of LFMC (R 2 >0.70-0.84 in several cases). In addition, RGR, BSI and NDWI indexes are found to be promising predictors of LFMC (R2= 0.7). Efforts such as the one presented here to link a detailed SPA characterization with fire prevention are innovative and emerging, but also necessary when realistic estimations of LFMC dynamics are required. Particularly, our results will serve to improve the forest management of Mediterranean forests, allowing for the precise prediction and identification of forest wildfire behavior and risk thresholds (from surface fire to crown fire), but also the design of optimum irrigation schemes to decrease the risk of crown fires as those with the highest negative impacts. Keywords: live fuel moisture content; ecohydrology; fire weather index; wildland-urban interface; sapflow ID: 3623757
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    The wildland-urban interface of the United States under changing conditions
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    The wildland-urban interface (WUI) is an ecological and social landscape where Americans live with, recreate in, and depend on forests most directly. Such WUI areas have rapidly expanded in the U.S. over the past several decades and currently encompass 10% of the conterminous U.S. land area, 14% of total forestland, and hold 33% of all houses. This presentation summarizes a forthcoming U.S. national assessment of forest research needs related to an increasing WUI in a changing climate. Designed to provide closer linkages between forest science and national policy, the comprehensive assessment addresses the full range of forest research needs including both threats and opportunities related to wildfire, biodiversity, human health, social dimensions, water quality, invasive species, mapping and monitoring. The assessment is cast in a social-ecological framework to consider the complex interactions and cascading consequences of forest, demographic, and climate changes that shape WUI environments and forest dynamics therein. As settings where people live in close proximity to natural vegetation, the WUI provides a unique opportunity to take proactive steps to improve ecosystem health and community wellbeing. Keywords: Research, Monitoring and data collection, Climate change, Biodiversity conservation, Social protection ID: 3602561

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