Burning piles- Effects of pile age, moisture, mass, and composition on fire effects, consumption, and decomposition
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Millions of acres of fuels reduction treatments are being implemented each year in the fire adapted forests of the US. Typical these fuel reduction treatments target small diameter trees for removal producing large amounts of unmerchantable woody material and elevating surface fuel loadings. Often this material has no market value and is piled by hand or with heavy machinery and burned on site. We studied replicated experimental pile burns from two locations (Wenatchee, WA and Santa Clara, NM) over three years. We examined the effects of time since construction (i.e., pile age) and burn season (fall and spring) on fuel bed properties, combustion dynamics, fuel consumption, and charcoal formation for hand-constructed piles in thinned ponderosa pine-dominated sites. The webinar will also touch on pile decomposition rates and unplanned fire in areas with piled fuels.