Roger D. Ottmar
Pacific Wildland Fire Sciences Laboratory
Seattle, WA 98103
Contact Roger D. Ottmar
I lead efforts to develop (1) a natural fuels photo series for the United States, Mexico, and Brazil; (2) the Consume model, which predicts fuel consumption and emission production by combustion phase for forested and non-forested fuel types across North America; and (3) the Fuel Characteristic Classification System, which characterizes fuelbeds for the United States and the world. I consult on the assessment of wildland firefighter exposure to smoke and the associated health risks and also lead the Prescribed Fire Combustion and Atmospheric Research Experiment (RxCADRE), a group of individual researchers and research teams from across the United States which is instrumenting and collecting data that will complement each area of research in the pre-, active, and postfire burning periods of prescribed burns.
Fuelbed characteristics, fuel moisture, fuel consumption, smoke management, firefighter exposure to smoke, and technology transfer of science.
I have been involved with fuels, fire, and smoke-related research for over 35. In my early career, I lead efforts to modifiy and improve the the natural fuels photo series and develop models for predicting fuel consumption and emissions for smoke management planning. Later, I become interested in firefighters and their exposure to smoke both on the fireline and in camp and in developing a system to better characertize fuelbeds for fire planning.
Why This Research is Important
Whether it is prediction of fire behavior variables such as flamelength and rate of spread, fire effects such as smoke, air quality impacts, carbon release, tree mortality, or mineral soil exposure, a comprehensive characterization of fuelbeds and consumption of the fuelbed components by combustion stage are required. In addition, firefighter exposure to smoke and the resulting short-term and long-term effects are not well understood. Further research is needed if appropriate firefighter risk management strategies are to be developed.
- University of Idaho, Honorary Doctorate Natural Resources, 2008
- University of Washington, M.S. Atmospheric Science, 1980
- University of Washington, B.S. Atmospheric Science, 1977
- Eastern Washington State College, B.A. Secondary Education/Geology, 1973
- Research Forester, Us Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station
1980 - Current
I started my career with the Forest Service in northern Idaho as a trail crew foreman in 1970. I received my BS at the University of Washington in Atmospheric Science in 1977 and was hired as a forestry technician for the Pacific Northwest Research Station in 1978. In 1980 I received my MS in Forest Management and was converted to a Research Forester. Since 1980, I have been leading research studies in fuels, fuel combustion, and smoke management and transfering the knowledge in those subjects for the PNW Research Station.
- American Meteorological Society, Member (1980 - Current)
Awards & Recognition
- Honorary Degree of Doctor of Natural Resources, University of Idaho, 2008
For providing critical knowledge on fire effects, smoke production and atmospheric pollution and transfering that knowledge.
- Chief's Award--Technology Transfer, 2006
In recognition for teaching smoke management courses, leading fire management workshops, and designing, developing, and distributing, supporting, and transferring applications.
Featured Publications & Products
- Lewis, Sarah A.; Hudak, Andrew T.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Lentile, Leigh B.; Hood, Sharon M.; Cronan, James B.; Morgan, Penny. 2011. Using hyperspectral imagery to estimate forest floor consumption from wildfire in boreal forests of Alaska, USA.
- Wright, Clinton S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E. 2010. Critique of Sikkink and Keane's comparison of surface fuel sampling techniques.
- Vihnanek, Robert E.; Balog, Cameron S.; Wright, Clinton S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Kelly, Jeffrey W. 2009. Stereo photo series for quantifying natural fuels. Volume XII: Post-hurricane fuels in forests of the Southeast United States..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Miranda, Ana Isabel; Sandberg, David V. 2009. Characterizing sources of emissions from wildland fires.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Wright, Clint S.; Prichard, Susan J. . 2009. A suite of fire, fuels, and smoke management tools.
- French, Nancy H.F.; de Groot, William J.; Jenkins, Liza K.; Rogers, Brendan M.; Alvarado, Ernesto; Amiro, Brian; De Jong, Bernardus; Goetz, Scott; Hoy, Elizabeth; Hyer, Edward; Keane, Robert; Law, B.E.; McKenzie, Donald; McNulty, Steven G.; Ottmar, Roger; Perez-Salicrup, Diego R.; Randerson, James; Robertson, Kevin M.; Turetsky, Merritt. 2011. Model comparisons for estimating carbon emissions from North American wildland fire.
- Turetsky, Merritt R.; Kane, Evan S.; Harden, Jennifer W.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Maines, Kristen L.; Hoy, Elizabeth; Kasischke, Eric S. 2010. Recent acceleration of biomass burning and carbon losses in Alaskan forests and peatlands.
- Hollis, J.J.; Matthews, S.; Ottmar, Roger; Prichard, S.J.; Slijepcevic, S.; Burrows, N.D.; Ward, B.; Tolhurst, K.G.; Anderson, W.R.; Gould, J S. 2010. Testing woody fuel consumption models for application in Australian southern eucalypt forest fires.
Publications & Products
- Ottmar, Roger D. 2014. Wildland fire emissions, carbon, and climate: Modeling fuel consumption.
- Keane, Robert E.; Herynk, Jason M.; Toney, Chris; Urbanski, Shawn P.; Lutes, Duncan C.; Ottmar, Roger D. 2013. Evaluating the performance and mapping of three fuel classification systems using Forest Inventory and Analysis surface fuel measurements.
- Prichard, Susan J.; Sandberg, David V.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Eberhardt, Ellen; Andreu, Anne; Eagle, Paige; Swedin, Kjell. 2013. Fuel Characteristic Classification System version 3.0: technical documentation.
- Brewer, Nolan W.; Smith, Alistair M.S.; Hatten, Jeffery A.; Higuera, Philip E.; Hudak, Andrew T.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Tinkham, Wade T. 2013. Fuel moisture influences on fire-altered carbon in masticated fuels: An experimental study.
- Schroeder, Wilfrid; Ellicott, Evan; Ichoku, Charles; Ellison, Luke; Dickinson, Matthew B.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Clements, Craig; Hall, Dianne; Ambrosia, Vincent; Kremens, Robert. 2013. Integrated active fire retrievals and biomass burning emissions using complementary near coincident ground, airborne and spaceborne sensor data.
- Hejl, Anna M.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Jannik, G. Timothy; Eddy, Teresa P.; Rathbun, Stephen I.; Commodore, Adwoa A.; Pearce, John L.; Nacher, Luke P. 2013. Radionuclide activity concentrations in forest surface fuels at the Savannah River site.
- Hudak, Andrew T.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Brewer, Nolan W.; Smith, Alistair M. S.; Morgan, Penelope. 2013. The relationship of post-fire white ash cover to surface fuel consumption.
- Hollingsworth, LaWen T.; Kurth, Laurie L.; Parresol, Bernard R.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Prichard, Susan J. 2012. A comparison of geospatially modeled fire behavior and fire management utility of three data sources in the southeastern United States.
- Andreu, Anne G.; Shea, Dan; Parresol, Bernard R.; Ottmar, Roger D. 2012. Evaluating fuel complexes for fire hazard mitigation planning in the southeastern United States.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Prichard, Susan J. 2012. Fuel treatment effectiveness in forests of the upper Atlantic Coastal Plain—an evaluation at two spatial scales.
- Frankman, David; Webb, Brent W.; Butler, Bret W.; Jimenez, Daniel; Forthofer, Jason M.; Sopko, Paul; Shannon, Kyle S.; Hiers, J. Kevin; Ottmar, Roger D. 2012. Measurements of convective and radiative heating in wildland fires.
- McKenzie, Donald; French, Nancy H.F.; Ottmar, Roger D. 2012. National database for calculating fuel available to wildfires.
- Hyde, Joshua D.; Smith, Alistair; Ottmar, Roger D. 2012. Properties affecting the consumption of sound and rotten coarse woody debris in northern Idaho: a preliminary investigation using laboratory fires.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Blake, John I.; Crolly, William T. 2012. Using fine-scale fuel measurements to assess wildland fuels, potential fire behavior and hazard mitigation treatments in the southeastern USA.
- Hyde, Joshua C.; Smith, Alistair M.S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Alvarado, Ernesto C.; Morgan, Penelope. 2011. The combustion of sound and rotten coarse woody debris: a review.
- Kasischke, Eric S.; Turetsky, Merritt R.; Ottmar, Roger D.; French, Nancy H.F.; Hoy, Elizabeth E.; Kane, Evan S. 2008. Evaluation of the composite burn index for assessing fire severity in Alaskan black spruce forests.
- Morfin-Rios, Jorge E.; Alvarado-Celestino, Ernesto; Jardel-Pelaez, Enrique J.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Wright, David K.; Michel-Fuentes, Jose M.; Wright, Clinton S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Sandberg, David V.; Najera-Diaz, Andres. 2008. Photo series for quantifying forest fuels in Mexico: montane subtropical forests of the Sierra Madre del Sur and temperate forests and montane shrubland of the northern Sierra Madre Oriental.
- Alexander III, Jack D.; Findley, Jean; Kury, Brenda K.; Beyers, Jan L.; Cram, Douglas S.; Baker, Terrell T.; Boren, Jon C.; Edminster, Carl; Ferguson, Sue A.; McKay, Steven; Nagel, David; Piepho, Trent; Rorig, Miriam; Anderson, Casey; Hoadley, Jeanne; Ford, Paulette L.; Andersen, Mark C.; Fredrickson, Ed L.; Truett, Joe; Roemer, Gary W.; Kury, Brenda K.; Vollmer, Jennifer; May, Christine L.; Lee, Danny C.; Menakis, James P.; Keane, Robert E.; Zhu, Zhi-Liang; Miller, Carol; Davis, Brett; Gray, Katharine; Mix, Ken; Kuvlesky Jr., William P.; Drawe, D. Lynn; Narog, Marcia G.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Wright, Clinton S.; Paysen, Timothy E.; Pendleton, Burton K.; Pendleton, Rosemary L.; White, Carleton S.; Rogan, John; Stow, Doug; Franklin, Janet; Miller, Jennifer; Levien, Lisa; Fischer, Chris; Underwood, Emma; Klinger, Robert; Moore, Peggy; Wright, Clinton S. 2008. Poster Session- Extended Abstracts.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Sandberg, David V.; Riccardi, Cynthia L.; Prichard, Susan J. 2007. An overview of the fuel characteristic classification systemquantifying, classifying, and creating fuelbeds for resource planning..
- Youngblood, Andrew; Wright, Clinton S.; Ottmar, Roger D.; McIver, James D. 2007. Changes in fuelbed characteristics and resulting fire potentials after fuel reduction treatments in dry forests of the Blue Mountains, northeastern Oregon.
- Lentile, Leigh; Morgan, Penny; Hardy, Colin; Hudak, Andrew; Means, Robert; Ottmar, Roger; Robichaud, Peter; Sutherland, Elaine; Way, Frederick; Lewis, Sarah. 2007. Lessons learned from Rapid Response Research on wildland fires.
- Riccardi, Cynthia L.; Prichard, Susan J.; Sandberg, David V.; Ottmar, Roger D. 2007. Quantifying physical characteristics of wildland fuels using the fuel characteristic classification system..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Wright, Clinton S.; Seymour, Geoffrey B. 2007. Stereo photo series for quantifying natural fuels Volume IX: oak/juniper in southern Arizona and New Mexico..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Wright, Clinton S. 2007. Stereo photo series for quantifying natural fuels Volume X: sagebrush with grass and ponderosa pine-juniper types in central Montana..
- Riccardi, Cynthia L.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Sandberg, David V.; Andreu, Anne; Elman, Ella; Kopper, Karen; Long, Jennifer. 2007. The fuelbed: a key element of the Fuel Characteristic Classification System..
- Parresol, Bernard R.; Shea, Dan; Ottmar, Roger. 2006. Creating a fuels baseline and establishing fire frequency relationships to develop a landscape management strategy at the Savannah River Site.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Alvarado, Ernesto. 2004. Linking vegetation patterns to potential smoke production and fire hazard.
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Wright, Clinton S. 2002. Characterizing fuels in treated areas..
- Sandberg, David V.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Peterson, Janice L. 2002. Wildland fire in ecosystems: effects of fire on air.
- Sandberg, David; Ottmar, Roger D.; Cushon, Geoffrey H. 2001. Characterizing fuels in the 21st century..
- Hardy, Colin C.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Peterson, Janice L; Core, John E.; Seamon, Paula. 2001. Smoke management guide for prescribed and wildland fire: 2001 edition..
- Reinhardt, Timothy E.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Hanneman, Andrew J.S. 2000. Smoke exposure among firefighters at prescribed burns in the Pacific Northwest..
- Reinhardt, Timothy E.; Ottmar, Roger D. 2000. Smoke exposure at western wildfires..
- Reinhardt, Tim E.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Hallett, Michael J. 1999. Guide to monitoring smoke exposure of wildland firefighters..
- Sandberg, David V.; Hardy, Colin C.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Snell, J.A. Kendall; Acheson, Ann; Peterson, Janice L.; Seamon, Paula; Lahm, Peter; Wade, Dale. 1999. National strategic plan: modeling and data systems for wildland fire and air quality..
- Reinhardt, Timothy E.; Ottmar, Roger D. 1997. Smoke exposure among wildland firefighters: a review and discussion of current literature..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Schaaf, Mark D.; Alvarado, Ernesto. 1996. Smoke considerations for using fire in maintaining healthy forest ecosystems.
- Huff, Mark H.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Alvarado, Ernesto; Vihnanek, Robert E.; Lehmkuhl, John F.; Hessburg, Paul F.; Everett, Richard L. 1995. Historical and current forest landscapes in eastern Oregon and Washington Part II: Linking vegetation characteristics to potential fire behavior and related smoke production..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Hardy, Colin C.; Vihnanek, Robert E. 1990. Stereo photo series for quantifying forest residues in the Douglas-Fir-Hemlock type of the Willamette National Forest..
- Little, Susan N.; Ottmar, Roger D.; Ohmann, Janet L. 1986. Predicting duff consumption from prescribed burns on conifer clearcuts in western Oregon and western Washington..
- Ottmar, Roger D.; Sandberg, David V. 1985. Calculating moisture content for 1000-hour timelag fuels in western Washington and western Oregon..
|Testing Fuel Treatments in Boreal Forests|
A first-of-its-kind study tests the effects of fuel treatment on fuel consumption and fire behavior in Alaska's boreal forest