A/Prof Jason Sharples

A/Prof Jason Sharples

Project Leader
About
A/Prof Jason Sharples

Jason graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Mathematics/Physics) and Bachelor of Mathematics in 1995 and an Honours degree in Mathematics in 1996, all from the University of Newcastle. He then completed his PhD in pure mathematics and mathematical physics at the University of Canberra.
In 2001, Jason was appointed as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Australian National University where he worked on the spatiotemporal analysis of climatic variables such as rainfall and evaporation. In 2006 Jason moved to the School of PEMS where he worked on the Bushfire CRC's HighFire Risk Project.
Between 2008 and 2011 Jason worked in the School of PEMS as a Research Associate on an ARC funded project addressing the existence and stability of combustion waves arising in simplified reaction schemes.

In 2011 Jason was appointed as Lecturer in Mathematics in the School of PEMS, where he works as part of the Applied and Industrial Mathematics Research Group. Jason has been a Discovery Indigenous Award recipient, working on an ARC funded project concerned with better understanding the dynamics of extreme bushfire development. In 2014 he was appointed as an Associate Professor at the University of NSW Canberra.

Project leadership

Fire behaviour in dry eucalypt forests in Australia (and in many other vegetation types to a lesser extent) is characterised by the occurrence of spotfires—new fires ignited by the transport of burning debris such as bark ahead of an existing fire. Under most burning conditions, spotfires play little role in the overall propagation of a fire, except where spread is impeded by breaks in fuel or topography and spotfires allow these impediments to be overcome. However, under conditions of severe bushfire behaviour spotfire occurrence can be so prevalent that spotting becomes the dominant propagation mechanism and the fire spreads as a cascade of spotfires forming a ‘pseudo’ front. It has long been recognised that the presence of multiple individual fires affects the behaviour and spread of all fires present. The converging of separate individual fires into larger fires is called coalescence and can lead to rapid increases in fire intensity and spread rate, leading to the phenomenon of a ‘fire storm’. This coalescence effect is frequently used in prescribed burning, with multiple point ignitions used to rapidly burn out large areas.

The team has demonstrated the performance advantages of fire propagation models incorporating curvature dependence when applied to simple wind-driven fires at both laboratory and field scales. The research has also produced fundamental insights into how the shape of the fire line affects the dynamic behaviour of the fire as a whole. Coupled fire-atmosphere modelling was used to investigate how fire-induced air movements (pyroconvection) can produce significantly enhanced rates of spread for certain fire shapes.

Research team

Type Project Research team
CRC Core Project Threshold conditions for extreme fire behaviour afilkov, jsharples
Nature Abhors Curvature - Fires Included! Modelling Spot Fire Coalescence
18 Aug 2015
Spotting can be the dominant fire propagation mechanism during times of extreme fire weather. Spot...
Evaluation of Operational Models for Wind Variability Over Complex Terrain
18 Aug 2015
Understanding the variability of wind speed and direction across complex terrain is a vital part of...
Impact of Vegetation Regrowth on Wind Direction Over Complex Terrain
18 Aug 2015
Modelling wind direction can be recast in probabilistic terms using wind response distributions....
Christopher Thomas Conference Poster 2016
14 Aug 2016
A key problem in wildfire modelling is how to capture dynamic fire behaviour in models suitable for...
Experimental investigation of junction fire dynamics, with and without wind
29 Jun 2017
Junction fires occur when two oblique fire lines intersect with one another. The interaction of the...
Incorporation of spotting and fire dynamics in a coupled atmosphere - fire modelling framework
29 Jun 2017
This project focuses on looking for ways to improve operational fire-spread modelling by looking...
Incorporation of spotting and fire dynamics in a coupled atmosphere - fire modelling framework
19 Sep 2018
Spotting is a challenging aspect of bushfire operations. We currently have poor capacity to...

Resources credited

Type Released Title Download Key Topics
Presentation-Slideshow 18 Sep 2018 Pyroconvective interactions and dynamic fire propagation PDF icon Save (2.21 MB) fire, fire impacts, fire weather
Presentation-Slideshow 31 Oct 2017 Fire coalescence and mass spotfire dynamics: experimentation, modelling and simulation PDF icon Save (932.85 KB) fire impacts, fire severity, fire weather
Presentation-Slideshow 07 Sep 2017 A unified approach to fire spread modelling PDF icon Save (4.06 MB) fire, modelling, propagation
Presentation-Slideshow 07 Jul 2017 Building bushfire predictive services capability PDF icon Save (9.97 MB) fire, fire weather, modelling
HazardNoteEdition 25 Oct 2016 Next generation fire modelling PDF icon Save (1.35 MB) fire impacts, fire severity, fire weather
Presentation-Slideshow 24 Oct 2016 Fire coalescence and mass spot fire dynamics PDF icon Save (4.18 MB) fire, fire impacts, fire weather
Presentation-Audio-Video 20 Oct 2016 Fire coalescence and mass spotfire dynamics - project overview File Save (0 bytes) fire impacts, fire severity, fire weather
Presentation-Slideshow 30 Aug 2016 Wind speed reduction induced by post-fire vegetation regrowth - Rachael Quill PDF icon Save (4.44 MB) fire, fire impacts, fire weather
Presentation-Slideshow 11 Sep 2015 Linking local wildfire dynamics to PyroCB development PDF icon Save (8.53 MB) fire, modelling
Presentation-Slideshow 04 Dec 2014 Fire coalescence and mass spotfire dynamics PDF icon Save (704.99 KB) fire, fire severity, modelling
Presentation-Audio-Video 27 Oct 2014 Environmental thresholds for dynamic fire propagation fire, propagation

Send a message to A/Prof Jason Sharples (via CRC)

User Contact