ASSP Georgia Chapter Meeting (VIRTUAL) on February 12th
February 12, 2024
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
The ASSP Georgia Chapter is pleased to partner with our colleagues at the SFPE (Society of Fire Protection Engineers) for our VIRTUAL meeting on February 12th, 2024 from 12PM to 1PM.
We are pleased to have “Dr. Muthu Kumaran Selvaraj is an Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute” who will be speaking at our February meeting VIRTUALLY.
This meeting will be offered at No Charge, must be pre-registered to receive the link to attend.
Topic – Physical aspects of Fire behavior – A case study on Maui & Canada wildfires
Wildland fire behavior is influenced by several factors such as fuel type, fuel moisture, topography, wind, and weather conditions (precipitation, humidity, temperature). It is necessary to understand the physical aspects of fire behavior to study the ignition and spread of wildfires. The objective of this talk is to give a brief overview of the physical processes involved in fire spread and how these processes coupled with wind and weather conditions can influence the behavior of large-scale wildfires. Following this, a case study on the recent fires in Maui (Hawaii, USA) and in Canada (June 2023) will be presented. The Maui fire was predominantly a grass fire, typically characterized with large flame length and rate of spread. The extended period of drought (reduces fuel moisture) and failure of fuel management strategies resulted in excessive accumulation of dry fuels. Further, the flames were fanned by intense winds from a hurricane in the vicinity of fire. The fire escaped into communities at the wildland-urban interface (WUI) causing serious damage to life and property. Firebrands (embers in air) generated from flammable building materials transported fire to the neighboring communities and to other parts of wildlands which were ready to burn. Canada also experienced its worst fire season this year (since 1989) due to warm and dry spring (less than 50% precipitation). The fires in Canada (originated in Canadian boreal forest) were strong enough to create their own weather (pyro cumulonimbus) and injected large volumes of smoke high into the atmosphere which transported to parts of Europe and the USA. Fire-fighters from several parts of the world were mobilized to combat the blaze and around 120,000 people were evacuated from the region. Data (wind, weather, and fuel) assimilated from various sources and fire reports will be synthesized to give a general perspective on the ignition and spread of these fires.
Speaker – Dr. Muthu Kumaran Selvaraj is an Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Dr. Muthu Kumaran Selvaraj is an Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras with a specialization in thermal sciences and combustion. During his post-doctoral research, he worked on a collaborative project with Lockheed Martin which investigated the effect of fuel variability and distribution on wildfire spread. He also collaborated with the New York Times and simulated the Bronx apartment fire which killed 17 people in January 2022. He is currently working on a SERDP project which investigates the coupled interaction of fire, flow, and vegetation during prescribed burns. His research interests include laminar flames, multi-phase reactive flows, wildland fires, building fires, and CFD.
The meeting will be held on February 12, 2024. VIRTUALLY – Must be pre-registered to receive the link to login. We are excited about our program!