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Project ID: 17-1-05-5

Year: 2017

Date Started: 08/01/2017

Ending Date:  09/30/2019

Title: Use of NWP Models to Identify Convective Outflows for Fire Weather Forecasting

Project Proposal Abstract: Abrupt changes in wind direction and speed can dramatically impact wildfire development and spread and, consequently, have been involved in a number of fatality fires. A frequent driver of these is outflows of thunderstorms or organized convective systems, which can produce propagating mesoscale atmospheric boundaries in temperature, moisture, and momentum. Given the influence of such boundaries on wildfires, their identification and prediction present critical challenges for fire weather forecasters, response units, and public safety officials. As NWP models run at high resolution, have the potential to predict convective outflows in fire environments, their output may be used to develop a tool to identify mesoscale atmospheric boundaries (viz., convective outflows) in wildfire situations and regions of complex terrain. The proposed investigation will: 1) develop a tool to automate the identification of modeled thunderstorm outflow from real-time NWP model output; 2) validate the performance of both deterministic and probabilistic (ensemble) modeling systems and the tool in a wildfire episode involving convection over the central Plains; 3) validate the systems output and examine the tools performance in environments of complex terrain and in wildfire cases in the mountainous West involving convection; and 4) communicate model and tool outputs in a risk management context with weather forecasters, firefighters, and other responders and officials.

Principal Investigator: Jordan G. Powers

Agency/Organization: University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Branch or Dept: NCAR/MMM Lab/MP Section

Other Project Collaborators




Branch or Dept

Agreements Contact

Fred C. Fusilier

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Sponsored Agreements

Budget Contact

Valerie N. Koch

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Budget and Planning

Co-Principal Investigator

Janice L. Coen

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

NCAR/MMM Lab/MP Section

Project Locations

Fire Science Exchange Network

Great Basin

Great Plains

Northern Rockies

Southern Rockies







Project Deliverables

There is no final report available for this project.
There are no deliverables available for this project.

Supporting Documents

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