Original paper

A single-layer litter-moisture model for estimating forest-fire danger

Wittich, Klaus-Peter

Meteorologische Zeitschrift Vol. 14 No. 2 (2005), p. 157 - 164

published: May 10, 2005

DOI: 10.1127/0941-2948/2005/0017

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ArtNo. ESP025011402009, Price: 29.00 €

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Moisture schemes which assess the water content of fine fuels are an essential part of many grassland and forest fire-danger rating models operated in countries suffering from drought. In this paper a fine-fuel moisture model is presented which is based on the water-transfer and heat-transfer equation. The model requires standard meteorological input variables in hourly (or shorter) time intervals to make the diurnal behaviour of fuel moisture visible. Nevertheless, it is kept simple for operational use. A validation with litter-moisture measurements in the range between 10 and 300 % (dry-weight basis) is presented using a small electronic weighing device installed inside a weather screen and in a grass canopy in the open. It provides acceptable results.