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Mapping wildland fuels for fire management across multiple scales: Integrating remote sensing, GIS, and biophysical modeling

International Journal of Wildland Fire

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Abstract

Fuel maps are essential for computing spatial fire hazard and risk and simulating fire growth and intensity across a landscape. However, fuel mapping is an extremely difficult and complex process requiring expertise in remotely sensed image classification, fire behavior, fuels modeling, ecology, and geographical information systems (GIS). This paper first presents the challenges of mapping fuels: canopy concealment, fuelbed complexity, fuel type diversity, fuel variability, and fuel model generalization. Then, four approaches to mapping fuels are discussed with examples provided from the literature: (1) field reconnaissance; (2) direct mapping methods; (3) indirect mapping methods; and (4) gradient modeling. A fuel mapping method is proposed that uses current remote sensing and image processing technology. Future fuel mapping needs are also discussed which include better field data and fuel models, accurate GIS reference layers, improved satellite imagery, and comprehensive ecosystem models.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Mapping wildland fuels for fire management across multiple scales: Integrating remote sensing, GIS, and biophysical modeling
Series title:
International Journal of Wildland Fire
Volume
10
Issue:
3-4
Year Published:
2001
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
International Journal of Wildland Fire
First page:
301
Last page:
319