Journal cover Journal topic
Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 14, 2829-2845, 2014
© Author(s) 2014. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
31 Oct 2014
Recent advances and applications of WRF–SFIRE
J. Mandel1,2, S. Amram3,4, J. D. Beezley5, G. Kelman3,6, A. K. Kochanski7, V. Y. Kondratenko1, B. H. Lynn3,6, B. Regev3,4, and M. Vejmelka1,2 1University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO, USA
2Institute of Computer Science, Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic
3The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
4Ministry of Public Security, Jerusalem, Israel
5CERFACS and Météo France, Toulouse, France
6Weather It Is, LDT, Efrat, Israel
7University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA
Abstract. Coupled atmosphere–fire models can now generate forecasts in real time, owing to recent advances in computational capabilities. WRF–SFIRE consists of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model coupled with the fire-spread model SFIRE. This paper presents new developments, which were introduced as a response to the needs of the community interested in operational testing of WRF–SFIRE. These developments include a fuel-moisture model and a fuel-moisture-data-assimilation system based on the Remote Automated Weather Stations (RAWS) observations, allowing for fire simulations across landscapes and time scales of varying fuel-moisture conditions. The paper also describes the implementation of a coupling with the atmospheric chemistry and aerosol schemes in WRF–Chem, which allows for a simulation of smoke dispersion and effects of fires on air quality. There is also a data-assimilation method, which provides the capability of starting the fire simulations from an observed fire perimeter, instead of an ignition point. Finally, an example of operational deployment in Israel, utilizing some of the new visualization and data-management tools, is presented.

Citation: Mandel, J., Amram, S., Beezley, J. D., Kelman, G., Kochanski, A. K., Kondratenko, V. Y., Lynn, B. H., Regev, B., and Vejmelka, M.: Recent advances and applications of WRF–SFIRE, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 14, 2829-2845,, 2014.
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