How massive wildfires create their own weather
“Even small fires, even grass fires, modify the local wind around the fire,” says Craig Clements, who directs San Jose State University’s Wildfire Interdisciplinary Research Center.
But what is new is our ability to predict fire-induced weather patterns quickly enough to help firefighters anticipate them.
Adam Kochanski is another researcher at the Wildfire Interdisciplinary Research Center, leading the center’s fire modeling group. The models he uses focus on how fires create their own weather as well as how they impact air quality.
In the last few years, Kochanski says they’ve been able to refine their model, which can now create a 48-hour forecast within three to five hours.