Mr Christopher Thomas


Field of Study: Coupled atmospheric-fire modelling

Supervisor: Assoc. Prof. Jason Sharples

Co-Supervisor: Assoc. Prof. Jason Evans

Research Topic: Incorporation of spotting and intrinsic fire dynamics in a coupled atmosphere-fire modelling framework

Over recent years my work has involved the modelling of natural hazards, including tsunami, extreme winds and now bushfires. Large fires are driven by the local weather conditions, but they also play a part in producing those conditions. Consequently, attempts to properly understand these fires should involve coupled weather-fire models that reflect this interaction. Such models exist but it is fair to say they are still at an early stage in their development. For example, one phenomenon that has not yet been incorporated into these models is the development of spot fires, where wind-driven embers ignite new fires, sometimes far ahead of the main fire front. My research focuses on the incorporation of this and other phenomena into an existing open-source coupled atmospheric-fire model.

Journal articles

Thomas CM; Sharples JJ; Evans JP, 2017, 'Modelling the dynamic behaviour of junction fires with a coupled atmosphere-fire model', International Journal of Wildland Fire, vol. 26, pp. 331 - 344, 10.1071/WF16079

Conference Papers

Thomas CM; Sharples JJ; Evans JP, (eds.), 2015, 'Pyroconvective interaction of two merged fire lines: curvature effects and dynamic fire spread', in 21ST INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS ON MODELLING AND SIMULATION (MODSIM2015), MODELLING & SIMULATION SOC AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND INC, Gold Coast, AUSTRALIA, pp. 312 - 318, presented at 21st International Congress on Modelling and Simulation (MODSIM) held jointly with the 23rd National Conference of the Australian-Society-for-Operations-Research / DSTO led Defence Operations Research, Gold Coast, AUSTRALIA, 29 November - 04 December 2015