Bushfire research

Our bushfire research is improving the understanding of fire, and improving technologies and strategies to save lives and limit damage.

Bushfire has been part of the Australian landscape for millions of years. Much of our vegetation has evolved with fire, and like the vegetation in other harsh and dry environments, it has developed characteristics that promote the spread of fire.

Australian scientists are developing reliable tools for predicting bushfire behaviour to save lives and limit damage.

Details about the 2009 Victorian bushfires were reported in real-time on social network sites, but this was not visible to state or federal disaster response agencies.

We undertake work on advancing fire spread prediction and bushfire suppression systems by using sophisticated data analysis techniques and computer modelling. Working with state land management, rural fire agencies and other research agencies, our scientists apply knowledge of bushfire dynamics to real events and help predict risks.

We have been involved in bushfire research for more than sixty years. This has focused on:

  • development of fire data analysis tools
  • understanding and predicting bushfire behaviour
  • the impact of bushfires on infrastructure
  • ecological responses to fire
  • the impact of climate change on bushfire risk
  • pollutants and greenhouse gases as a result of bushfires.

Research results have been used to respond to bushfire threat through weather warnings, fire location information, fire-fighter training, predicting fire behaviour and informing fire safety policy.


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