Navigation Links
Unusual weather events identified during the Black Saturday bushfires
Date:8/8/2012

Research has revealed that the extremely hot, dry and windy conditions on Black Saturday combined with structures in the atmosphere called 'horizontal convective rolls' -similar to streamers of wind flowing through the air - which likely affected fire behaviour.

The study is the first of its kind to produce such detailed, high-resolution simulations of weather patterns on the day and provides insights for future fire management and warning systems.

The work was led by Dr Todd Lane and Ms Chermelle Engel from The University of Melbourne with Prof Michael Reeder (Monash University) and Dr Michael Rezny (ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science).

The team examined meteorological conditions across Victoria on 7 February, 2009. The analysis used a very high-resolution weather forecasting model, which represented the airflow over the entire state on 400 metre weather grids, which are about ten times smaller than the grids used in operational weather forecasting. Weather conditions observed on the day were used to validate the model.

"Fire fighters reported extraordinary behaviour from the Black Saturday bushfires. We wanted to understand what weather characteristics produce these extreme conditions to aid future fire control efforts," said Dr Lane from the School of Earth Sciences at The University of Melbourne.

"We found that weather events at a horizontal scale of about 10 kilometres introduced variability in the wind, temperature and humidity conditions. These smaller events combined to produce significant variability in fire danger across much of Victoria."

"Similar wind patterns have been observed previously on hot days, but the convective rolls on Black Saturday were unusual as the high temperatures meant they were stronger and spaced wider apart. The rolls create bands of fast and slow wind around 5-10 kilometres apart, causing variations in fire danger. Fire spread is related to wind speed and the rolls might have caused fires to behave differently over a relatively small distance," added Dr Lane.

On the day a strong late-afternoon cool change and a second weaker late-evening cool change altered conditions dramatically as it moved across the state.

Professor Reeder said one of the most astonishing results from the study was that after sunset the cold front generated a wave (technically called an undular bore).

"This wave propagated ahead of the front and appeared to have reinvigorated the fire around Beechworth. Although we believe that this kind of behaviour is common, this is the first time it has been documented.".

"With improved computing power in the future, this kind of analysis should be useful for operational forecasting on days of fire danger, providing a better guide for public warning systems and fire fighting resources," said Ms Engel.


'/>"/>
Contact: Nerissa Hannink
nhannink@unimelb.edu.au
61-430-588-055
University of Melbourne
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Extreme weather threatens rich ecosystems
2. Warm, dry El Nino weather puts baby sea turtle at risk
3. JRC and US NOAA enhance cooperation on climate, weather, oceans and coasts
4. Birds that live with varying weather sing more versatile songs
5. Research links extreme summer heat events to global warming
6. Planarian genes that control stem cell biology identified
7. Hiding in plain sight, a new frog species with a weird croak is identified in New York City
8. Common North American frog identified as carrier of deadly amphibian disease
9. Culprit behind unchecked angiogenesis identified
10. Gene mutation identified as contributor to autism spectrum disorders
11. Researchers identified a protein useful in predicting the risk of pulmonary metastases in breast cancer patients
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Unusual weather events identified during the Black Saturday bushfires
(Date:6/23/2017)... ITHACA, N.Y. , June 23, 2017  IBM ... in dairy research, today announced a new collaboration using ... the chances that the global milk supply is impacted ... project, Cornell University has become the newest academic institution ... Chain, a food safety initiative that includes IBM Research, ...
(Date:5/23/2017)...  Hunova, the first robotic gym for the rehabilitation and functional motor ... Genoa, Italy . The first 30 robots will be ... USA . The technology was developed and patented at the ... spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million euro investment from entrepreneur ... ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... , May 16, 2017   Bridge ... health organizations, and MD EMR Systems , ... development partner for GE, have established a partnership ... Portal product and the GE Centricity™ products, including ... EMR. These new integrations will ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... They call it the “hairy ball.” ... depiction of a system of linkages and connections so complex and dense that ... computer science at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and director of the university’s bioinformatics ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... ... AMRI, a global contract research, development and manufacturing organization ... quality of life, will now be offering its impurity solutions as a stand-alone ... for all new drug products, including the finalization of ICH M7 earlier this ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... , ... October 11, 2017 , ... ComplianceOnline’s Medical Device ... on 7th and 8th June 2018 in San Francisco, CA. The Summit brings together ... as several distinguished CEOs, board directors and government officials from around the world to ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... Austin, TX (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 ... ... in August compared the implantation and pregnancy rates in frozen and fresh ... the contribution of progesterone and maternal age to IVF success. , After comparing ...
Breaking Biology Technology: