News from the CRC
Prestigious gong for researcher
An inaugural award recognising scientific achievements has been presented to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC researcher Dr Marta Yebra.
Dr Yebra and co-recipient, Nick Leseberg from the University of Queensland, received their awards at the Australia Science Academy’s annual event, Science at the Shine Dome, on 24 May 2017.
Dr Yebra was awarded in recognition of her CRC research, conducted through Australian National University, which is mapping bushfire hazards and impacts. The project is developing methods to produce spatial information on fire hazard needed by planners, land managers and emergency services.
The Max Day Award recipients each received a $20,000 grant toward their research. Dr Yebra will use her Max Day Award funding to conduct experiments at the National Arboretum Canberra to determine the moisture content of Australia’s native forests.
Moisture content is particularly important to predicting bushfires on a large scale as it affects the likelihood of ignition occurring, as well as the severity and spread of the fire. This real-world data will be incorporated into new models that can be used to predict bushfires.
“I can't express how much the Max Day Environmental Science Fellowship Award means to me," Dr Yebra said.
"This acknowledgement is something that I will cherish for all my life. It opens new doors for me to achieve that personal and professional motivation by contributing to the cost to collect an essential data set as an important step towards comprehensive fire risk monitoring in Australia. I feel honoured and excited on receiving this award which signifies the importance that Australia places on the bushfire research I do,” said Dr Yebra.
The Max Day Environmental Science Fellowship Award was established in honour of respected Australian ecologist and entomologist Dr Max Day, whose commitment to science goes back 74 years. At 101 years old, Dr Day is the longest serving fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.Science at the Shine Dome on 24 May 2017.