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The photoload sampling technique: estimating surface fuel loadings from downward-looking photographs of synthetic fuelbeds

Posted date: March 29, 2007
Publication Year: 
2007
Authors: Keane II, Robert E.; Dickinson, Laura J.
Publication Series: 
General Technical Report (GTR)
Source: General Technical Report RMRS-GTR-190. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 44 p.

Abstract

Fire managers need better estimates of fuel loading so they can more accurately predict the potential fire behavior and effects of alternative fuel and ecosystem restoration treatments. This report presents a new fuel sampling method, called the photoload sampling technique, to quickly and accurately estimate loadings for six common surface fuel components (1 hr, 10 hr, 100 hr, and 1000 hr downed dead woody, shrub, and herbaceous fuels). This technique involves visually comparing fuel conditions in the field with photoload sequences to estimate fuel loadings. Photoload sequences are a series of downward-looking and close-up oblique photographs depicting a sequence of graduated fuel loadings of synthetic fuelbeds for each of the six fuel components. This report contains a set of photoload sequences that describe the range of fuel component loadings for common forest conditions in the northern Rocky Mountains of Montana, USA to estimate fuel loading in the field. A companion publication (RMRS-RP-61CD) details the methods used to create the photoload sequences and presents a comprehensive evaluation of the technique.

Citation

Keane, Robert E.; Dickinson, Laura J. 2007. The photoload sampling technique: estimating surface fuel loadings from downward-looking photographs of synthetic fuelbeds. General Technical Report RMRS-GTR-190. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 44 p.