Canadian Fire Effects Model
The Canadian Fire Effects Model (CanFIRE) is a collection of Canadian fire behaviour models that calculates immediate or physical fire effects on forested, grass or slash stand characteristics. CanFIRE is a desktop (Microsoft Windows) application available free for download on request.
CanFIRE originated as the Boreal Fire Effects (BORFIRE) research model. It studied the dynamics of changing fire regimes, forest carbon storage, carbon emissions and forest composition under climate change.
What CanFIRE does
CanFIRE calculates fire behaviour and fire effects for multiple forest stands or plots of land. The model can run many 'what-if' scenarios; including prescribed burn planning or estimating expected wildfire behaviour and impacts. It can also simulate the resulting or ecological fire effects on forest stand composition.
CanFIRE simulates fuel conditions at the forest stand level for six major boreal tree species (jack pine, black spruce, white spruce, aspen, balsam fir, white birch) and the grass fuel type. Forest stands can be pure or mixed in any combination and proportion of species. More species and fuel types are under research.
What CanFIRE needs as input
- Canadian Forest Fires Weather Index (FWI) system parameters
- Fuel load values for trees, grass, or slash from direct measures (e.g. prescribed burn data) or from estimations of forest inventory (wildfire applications)
- Forest floor and dead woody debris fuel data that can be estimated from existing field surveys or databases
How CanFIRE is calculated
- Fire rate of spread is calculated using Canadian Forest Fire Behavior Prediction System equations and related procedures (e.g., foliar moisture content, BUI effect, etc.)
- Fuel consumption is calculated using new Canadian fuel consumption models
- Fire intensity is calculated using data from the Canadian fuel consumption models and Byram's (1959) equation [I=hwr]
- Ecological effects are simulated using species-based fire ecology traits and mortality models
For more information about CanFIRE or downloading the desktop application, please send an email to Alan Cantin with “CanFIRE Desktop Request” in the subject line. We will send you a link.
- CANFIRE model (2012)
- Forest floor fuel consumption and carbon emissions in Canadian boreal forest fires (2009)
- Model comparisons for estimating carbon emissions from North American wildland fire (2011)
- Estimating direct carbon emissions from Canadian wildland fires (2007)
- Modeling Canadian wildland fire carbon emissions with the Boreal Fire Effects (BORFIRE) model (2006)
- Simulating the effects of future fire regimes on western Canadian boreal forests (2003)
- Simulating the impacts of future fire regimes and fire management strategies on vegetation and fuel dynamics in western Canada using a boreal fire effects model (BORFIRE) (2002)
- Physical properties of dead and downed round-wood fuels in the boreal forests of western and northern Canada (1999)
- Physical properties of dead and downed round-wood fuels in the boreal forests of Alberta and Northwest Territories (1997)
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