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Northern Research Station
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726
(608) 231-9318
(608) 231-9544 TTY/TDD

Sustaining Forests

Consequences of Fire and Fire Surrogate Treatments: The Central Appalachian Plateau Site - Animations and Videos - REMA

Racoon Ecological Management Area

About the Fire

Location: Raccoon Ecological Management Area, Ohio
Date of burn: April 5, 2001
Forest Type: Oak-Hickory
Forest Relief: Rugged/Hilly with fairly steep slopes

Note: The site layout did not allow the burning of both units together. The thin and burn unit was burned first followed by the burn only unit.

The unit was fired using three firing teams, two working along the north and south edges of the unit, one firing through the center of the unit. Each firing team used two or three drip torches allowing them to light several lines of fire parallel to the control lines.

Thin/Burn Start End
Ignition:  11:53  14:39
Temperature:  64 F  74 F
Relative Humidity:  39%  25%
Winds:  E/SE at 3 mph  E/SE at 3 mph
  • Southwest facing slope of the unit burned well, the North facing slope burned very poorly.
  • The use of interior ignition did help somewhat in pulling fire up the north facing slope but did not appear to burn with high intensity.
  • The fuel in the bottom along the creek on the north side of the unit would not carry fire due to high moisture content and greenness.

Information provided by Mike Bowden, Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources

Burn Only Start End
Ignition:  1520  1750
Temperature:  73 F  73 F
Relative Humidity:  26%  25%
Winds:  S/SW at 5 mph  W at 4 mph
  • This is the unit that burned the hottest.
  • Relative Humidity dropped to a low of 22%, temperature reached 76 F at 1615 hours
  • Owing to the conditions and terrain, very little interior ignition was used with the exception of flares.
  • The fire burned very intense and did spot a few times along the road on the north end of the unit and along the east line.
  • Firewhirls are observed throughout the unit and the smoke column was very visible from north of McArthur.
  • The most successful of the four burns in terms of creating high intensity fire.

Information provided by Mike Bowden, Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources

About the Animation

  • The animation is based on "real" temperatures recorded on HOBO recorders from 121 thermocouple locations in Raccoon Ecological Management Area.
  • The actual temperature data were recorded at 2 sec intervals from 25 cm above the ground surface. These data were sliced into 343 time slices corresponding to 30 sec intervals.
  • However, the actual time-step in the animation is at 2.5 minute time intervals (The "Tsxx" in the animation) to reduce loading time.
  • The temperatures were interpolated using inverse weighted distance using 2 points in the search radius.
  • The maps were created with ArcView 3.2a Avenue script.
  • As the area gets burned (ie., "affected" by the burn since the area burned is dependent on the accuracy of the interpolation), the color changes from lightbrown to gray.
  • The color scheme is self-explanatory, with the brighter reds indicating hotter burns.
  • The statistics for the temperature (in deg C) across all 126 points are:
1st Qu. Median Mean 3rd Qu. Std.Dev
101.50000 150.00000 154.60000 192.10000 74.27343
Min Max
  • Earlier studies have shown that temperatures above 150 deg C will topkill most saplings (< 10 cm diameter). See the legend below:
    [image:] legend for animation


Last Modified: 03/05/2009

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