Fire Dynamics



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A major  is an organized  curriculum  that  is  part  of an existing  degree  program.   A major must be associated with the degree program under which it is offered and must share common core courses and usually shares prerequisite courses with all other majors in the same degree program.

This  major  involves mathematical modeling,  fluid  dynamics, and environmental  factors  dealing  with wildland and prescribed fires. No other such major exists in Computational Sciences or the SUS.


Common  Core Courses: Scientific  Programming (ISC 5305) and Applied Computational Science-1, ACS-1 (ISC 5315) is the core set.

Physical science  and mathematically prepared  students  who are interested  in the environment and natural systems;  meteorology  students  interested  in  the  role  of  aerosols,  particulates,  and  gases emitted by forest fires and prescribed burning; physics or engineering  students  desiring to apply their knowledge  to combustion  in a natural  environment, wildland fire experts  who desire  to further their academic  career, computationally oriented  students  who  desire  a problem  of  direct  importance  to society, management and agency personnel who deal with the impact of wildland fires.


There  is a long  history  of studies  on the  ecological  effects  of fire, and  some  work  in engineering setting  on the mechanisms of fire generation  and propagation. However, to our knowledge there is no other  formal   PhD framework   for  the  study  of  fire  in  a  degree   program   as  a  fluid  dynamical phenomenon, with complex physical, chemical, and turbulent interactions with the environment.


Major requirements will be ISC5305, ISC5315, Fire Dynamics core courses plus 12 credit hours from the elective courses.

Fire Dynamics  core courses:

GFD 5XXX Intra to Fire Operations (NWCG S-130/S-190) with written project.   Special topics courses

In collaboration with Tall Timbers  Research Station (TTRS), The Jones Ecological  Research Center,

Apalachicola  National Forest, Florida Forest Service, and the US Forest Service (USFS) Athens, GA. Certification to work in active fireline operations. These will be developed  as real classroom  courses with letter grades.

GFD 5XXX Fire Behavior and Ecology (TTRS, USFS)

GFD 5XXX Fire Dynamics Laboratory (TTRS) GFD 6925 GFD Colloquium

GFD 6935r Seminar

Graduate  Courses

GFD 6905r Directed  Individual Study (3). (S/U grade only.)   May be repeated  to a maximum  of (48)

semester hours.

GFD  6915r  Supervised  Research  (1-5).  (S/U  grade  only.)  May  be repeated  to a maximum  of five semester hours.

GFD 6925 Geophysical  Fluid Dynamics Colloquium  (1). (S/U grade only.)

GFD  6935r  Seminar  (1-2).  (S/U  grade only.)  May be repeated  to a maximum  of two  (2) semester hours.

GFD  6980r  Dissertation   (1-12).  A  student  may  not  enroll  for  GFD  6980r  prior  to  passing  the

preliminary  (comprehensive) examination.   Students  must  establish  their  ability  to  handle  modern computer techniques applicable  to their research.

GFD 8964r Doctoral Preliminary Examination  (0). (P/F grade only)

GFD 8985r Dissertation  Defense (0). (P/F grade only)

(Existing applied math, fluid dynamics, meteorology, engineering, and chemistry courses.)


Elective  Courses:


Viscous  fluid flows,  turbulent  flows,  introduction  to computational mechanics,  water  resources  and environmental engineering,  hydraulics, hydrology, ground water, and Combustion.

Courses: CEG 5125,5415, 5515, 5635; ECH 5934r, EGM 5456,5810, 6845; EML 5422, ENV 5045.

  Geological  Sciences

Geophysics,  geomechanics,   geophysical   methods,   seismology,  modeling   of  groundwater   flow, hydrology.

Courses: GLY 5425, 5455, 5465, 5556, 5573, 5575, 5825, 5826, 5827, 5868r.


Numerical  analysis,  vector  and  tensor  analysis,  ordinary  and  partial  differential  equations,  matrix algebra,  integral transforms  and asymptotics, perturbation theory, hydrodynamic  stability, wave propagation theory.

Courses: MAD  5708,  5738,  5739, 6408r;  MAP  5207, 5217, 5345,  5346,  5423,  5431,  5441, 5512,

5513, 6434r, 6437r, 6939r.


Atmospheric  thermodynamics,  atmospheric  dynamics,  atmospheric   circulation,  weather  prediction, satellite observations and remote sensing.

Courses:  MET 5311,5312, 5340r, 5471, 5541r, 6308r, 6561r.


Stability of geophysical fluid flows, turbulence.

Courses: OCP 5056, 5253, 5256, 5271, 5285, 5551, 5930r, OCE 5009L.


Magnetohydrodynamics,   principles   of  thermodynamics,   mechanics,   electricity   and   magnetism, theoretical dynamics, electrodynamics, statistical mechanics, astrophysics/combustion.

Courses: PHY 5246, 5346, 5347, 5524.


Computational  methods   in  statistics,   statistical   procedures   for  the   natural   sciences,   statistical inference, probability, multivariate  analysis, stochastic processes, applied time series analysis. Courses: STA 5106, 5206, 5326, 5327, 5440, 5447, 5807r.

Scientific Computing

Numerical methods, scientific visualization, scientific computing, Applied Computational Science II. Courses: ISC 5226, 5227, 5228, 5307, 5316


GFDI Faculty Associates and Research Interests:

Dr.  Gang  Chen  (Characterization of Water  Flow  &  Solute  Transport,  Modeling  Sorption  Kinetics, Colloid-facilitated Transport  of Radionuclides, Bioremediation Kinetics  & Genetic Microbiology, Interfacial Phenomena.)

Dr.  Eric  Chicken  (Statistical   process  control,  Nonparametric  regression  and  density  estimation, Statistical estimation via wavelets, Water flow models.)

Dr.  Allan Clarke  (Climate  Dynamics,  El Nino  Predictions, Equatorial  & Shelf  Water Dynamics, Sea Level Rise.)

Dr. David Collins (Self-generated Turbulence in Magnetic Reconnection, Observational Diagnostics  of Self-Gravitating   MHO   Turbulence    in   Giant   Molecular   Clouds, Mesh Refinement Code for Astrophysics, Gravity  in  magnetoturbulent  fluids,  Magnetic  Fields  in  the  Formation  of  Molecular Clouds, Astrophysics.)

Dr.  William  Dewar  (Dynamics   of  the  ocean  at  scales  from  100  km  to  10,000  km,  or  from  the deformation scale to the basin scale.)

Dr. James Eisner (Hurricanes,  tornadoes, climate change, applied statistics, spatial statistics.)

Dr. Scott Goodrick  (Research  Affiliate, Wildland fire emissions, carbon, and climate, Wildfire-climate interactions.)

Mr. J. K. Hiers (Res. Affiliate, interested in Fire Dynamics)

Dr. Peter Hoeflich (Radiation hydrodynamics, non-equilibrium  thermodynamics and networks, nucleosynthesis and  supernovae.    Involved  and  initiated  observational  programs  both  at  ground based  observatories  (VLT,  Hawaii,  Gemini)  and  satellites  ranging  from the  Compel-gamma-ray, to HST and the SST.)

Dr. Markus  Huettel  (Ecology  of coastal  and shelf environments  with emphasis  on processes  in the sediments and at the sediment-water interface.)

Dr. Matthew  N. Moore (Modeling  and simulation, especially  fluid-structure  interactions  in geophysics and  biology;  applied  POE,  particularly   nonlinear  PDEs,  evolution  equations,  and  free  boundary problems).

Dr. Ziad  Muslimani  (Nonlinear  Schrodinger  Equation, Spectral  Transverse  Instabilities,  waves  and their modulation instability, Integrable discrete PT symmetric model.)

Dr. Kevin Speer (Deep currents & polar circulation.)

Dr. Philip Sura (Stochastic-dynamical understanding  of extreme climate events.)

Dr. Mark Sussman (Numerical Analysis, Fluid Dynamics, Deforming Boundary Problems.)

Dr. Youneng Tang (Sustainable  biological processes for drinking production,  Resource recovery from biological   wastewater   treatment,   In-situ   bio-remediation  of   groundwater   and   soil,  Bio-souring mitigation  during oil recovery,  Mathematical modeling  of biological processes  in reactors and porous media, Microbial ecology.)

Dr. Kamal Tawfiq  (Structural Foundations, Engineering  Behavior  of Construction  Materials, Dynamic

Characterization of Material, Nondestructive Testing, Numerical Modeling.)

Dr. Neda Yaghoobian (Land atmosphere  interaction, Boundary layer meteorology, Computational fluid dynamics, Urban microclimate, Energy efficiency and sustainability in buildings.)


EOAS Faculty and Research Interests:

Dr. Jon  E.  Ahlquist  (Research   on  planetary   scale  atmospheric   dynamics  at  interseasonal   and interannual time scales).

Dr. Mark A. Bourassa (Air/Sea Interaction, Remote Sensing, Boundary-Layer Meteorology, Tropical Meteorology)

Dr.     Ming    Cai     (Dynamics    of     global    mass     circulation,   Climate    Change,    Stratosphere­ Troposphere  Coupling.)

Dr. Jeffrey Chagnon (Mid-Latitude Dynamics Numerical Modeling)

Dr.  Henry  Fuelberg  (Synoptic  and Mesometeorology, Lightning,  Long-range transport  of pollutants and emissions.)

Dr. Robert Hart (Synoptic-Dynamic Meteorology, Tropical Cyclones, Cyclone genesis and development).

Dr. Guosheng  Liu (Radiative  transfer,  Satellite  remote  sensing  and applications  to forecasting  and climate research.)

Dr. Vasu Misra (Climate variability and predictability.)

Dr. Sharon Nicholson (Tropical meteorology)

Dr. Peter Ray (Physical Meteorology, Doppler Radar, Microphysical retrieval, Cloud Modeling.) Dr. Philip Sura (Stochastic-dynamical understanding of extreme climate events.)

Dr. Alison Wing (Tropical Convection and Climate, Tropical Cyclones.) Dr. Zhaohua Wu (Atmospheric and climate dynamics)

Dr. Ming Ye (Development and application of stochastic methods to describe flow and transport in randomly heterogeneous media).

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