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Webinar: Hollings Scholar Presentations: Exploration of the Hot Dry Windy Index and wildfire; Climate Change and overnight fire growth

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Friday, 24 July 2020, 2:00

Friday, July 24, 2020. 2:00 PM. Webinar: Hollings Scholar Presentations: Exploration of the Hot Dry Windy Index and wildfire; Climate Change and overnight fire growth. Clairisse Reiher & Emily McCutchan, 2020 Hollings Scholars. Sponsored by AACP. More information here.

  1. An exploration of the Hot Dry Windy Index & its applicability to the Alaska wildfire
    environment (Emily)
    Hot, dry, and windy conditions have a well-established link to wildfire growth. The Hot-Dry-
    Windy Index (HDW) combines daily values of wind speed and vapor pressure deficit to provide
    insight into large fire growth days. This study explores trends in HDW from 1980-2019 for
    Alaska based on ERA5 Reanalysis data, compares daily values of HDW to MODIS fire
    detections for individual PSA's, and examines case studies to provide insight into HDW's utility
    for fire forecasting in Alaska.
  2. Changing Summer Nighttime Climate and its Impact on Alaska Fire Growth (Clairisse)
    Growth of wildfires in Alaska is generally expected to occur with the assistance of heat and low
    moisture during daylight hours, while overnight low temperatures and relative humidity recoveries limit this growth. However, the progression of climatological warming in the Arctic,
    combined with prolonged exposure to sunlight at high latitudes during the summer, may be
    providing more capability for overnight fire growth than previously thought. This project makes
    use of historical wildfire records and ERA5-Land reanalysis data to investigate the potential of
    taking nighttime temperatures and relative humidity recoveries into consideration for fire
    weather forecasts.

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