Fire Danger Reanalysis Dataset

With a write up in Scientific Data on the methodologies used to compile the dataset, researchers have made 38-years worth of global fire danger reanalysis available as an open dataset.  The dataset was developed based on Canadian Forest Fire Weather Danger Rating and utilizes weather forcing from ERA-Interim.  The complete dataset contains seven fields (described below) used to assess fuel moisture along with fire behavior. Global fire danger reanalysis data is used to help determine the the climatological expectation of fire danger at a certain time of the year for any given location in the world.  The authors of the dataset noted that it “can be regarded as a complementary product to the fire danger forecasts issued daily by the Global Wildfire Information System (GWIS) under the umbrella of the European Copernicus program.”  The fire reanalysis dataset helps with determining local fire conditions by “combining a numerical weather prediction model and quality-controlled observations for past conditions in a statistically optimal way by means of an assimilation scheme.”  The authors have published a descriptor of the dataset with the hopes that it will “boost the data uptake and visibility in the wider scientific community and beyond.”

Global maps of 90th percentile of the Fire Weather Index where values are calculated cell by cell for the period 1980–2017. Figure: Vitolo et al., 2019.

Global maps of 90th percentile of the Fire Weather Index where values are calculated cell by cell for the period 1980–2017. Figure: Vitolo et al., 2019.

The dataset consists of seven indices, each of which have been indexed separately due to size.  Links to each of the datasets (available in netcdf4 format) are contained within the article.  These seven indices are:

  • Fine Fuel Moisture Code (FFMC) – a numeric rating of the moisture content of litter and other cured fine fuels.
  • Duff Moisture Code (DMC – a numeric rating of the average moisture content of loosely compacted organic layers of moderate depth.
  • Drought Code (DC) –  a numeric rating of the average moisture content of deep, compact organic layers.
  • Initial Spread Index (ISI) – a numeric rating of the expected rate of fire spread.
  • Build Up Index (BUI) – a numeric rating of the total amount of fuel available for combustion.
  • Fire Weather Index (FWI) – a numeric rating of fire intensity, dependent on weather conditions.
  • Daily Severity Rating (DSR) – a numeric rating of the difficulty of controlling fires.

More

Vitolo, C., Di Giuseppe, F., Krzeminski, B., & San-Miguel-Ayanz, J. (2019). A 1980–2018 global fire danger re-analysis dataset for the Canadian Fire Weather Indices. Scientific Data, 6, 190032. https://doi.org/10.1038/sdata.2019.32

via @underdarkgis

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