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Firebrand Accumulation in Front of Structures in Large Outdoor Fires



Samuel L. Manzello, Sayaka Suzuki


The production of firebrands contributes to the spread of disastrous large outdoor fires. As structures are exposed to wind, stagnation planes are produced around structures. In a prior scoping study, the authors demonstrated that firebrands may accumulate in these stagnation planes. Presently, a far more detailed study was undertaken. Specifically, full-scale walls of varying orientation were placed downstream of a Continuous-Feed Firebrand Generator and the wind speed was varied. For a given wall orientation exposed to specific firebrand size/mass distribution, it was observed that wind speed influences not only the spatial location and extent of the accumulated firebrands in the stagnation plane in front of the wall, but also the nature of the smoldering combustion intensity of the accumulated firebrands. The experiments demonstrated that higher wind speeds (10 m/s) did not promote accumulation of firebrands in stagnation planes in front of walls. The data may be used to provide guidance to appropriate separation distances that combustibles should be placed near structures and is also of great use to validate CFD models of firebrand transport.
Proceedings Title
Proceedings of the 52 Annual Japanese Combustion Symposium
Conference Dates
December 3-5, 2014
Conference Location


Large Outdoor Fires, Firebrands, Ignition


Manzello, S. and Suzuki, S. (2014), Firebrand Accumulation in Front of Structures in Large Outdoor Fires, Proceedings of the 52 Annual Japanese Combustion Symposium, Okayama, -1 (Accessed July 24, 2024)


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Created December 10, 2014, Updated February 19, 2017