Wild Fire Laboratory
Spain is a region under higher risk of Wild Fires, specially during spring, summer and fall. An important issue in Wild Fire research is to understand the dinamics of the fire phenomena and its impact on the enviornment, in this case the impact on the soil and their organic structure in terms of future regeneration.
In order to simplify the problem it is necessary to analyze and monitor wild fires in a controlled environment where some influences can be controlled, chosen and the experiment can be repeated in similar conditions.
There was a need to have a system that could be able to reproduce natural conditions for wild fires but with control on certain forzing aspects like: wind velocity, slope and others. Such laboratory will help to progress on scientific studies and in academia.
The main objective was to design, manufacture and install a wild fire laboratory that could be able to perform real wild fire experiments being able to select different wind velocities and slopes in a scale as close as possible as reality. All these in secure conditions for operators and with an intensive spatially and temporally system for monitoring temperatures of flames, weights and wind speed.
Three work benches were desing, builded and installed for this purpose:
A fixed slope burning bench with an array of more than a dozen of thermocouple high temperature probes fire proved. These were connecting to a datalogging system able of sampling at Hz and storing in a dedicated computer.
A slope selectable burning bench with an array of more than a dozen of thermocouple high temperature probes fire proved. These were connecting to a datalogging system able of sampling at Hz and storing in a dedicated computer.
A fire proved wind tunnel of 6 m long 3 m2 section able of reproducing up to 8 m/s constant wind speed. With more than a dozen of thermocouple high temperature probes fire proved and a wind sensor, all connected to a datalogging system able of sampling at Hz and storing in a dedicated computer.
Results from this project are quite satisfactory. This laboratory has helped in the achievement of several research works and is constantly contribution to the education of hundreds of students.
From the very technical point of view, in many years only replacement of some thermocouples have being necessary to to over-heating. This replacement can be easily done by the client personnel so there is no appreciable functional stop of performance.