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Fire management

3D landscapes augmented with fire simulation models tailored for the savanna landscapes of Northern Australia have been used in a range of engagement and training contexts over the last 8 years. Descriptive simulation models of fire behaviour are used to illustrate landscape-scale fire management using ariel incendiaries as well as fine-scale models showing the interaction between weeds and fire on northern peri-urban rural blocks. These custom designed simulations are described in more detail on the geosimulation page.

By making topographic influences on fuel and fire spread explicit using 3D landscapes, users are more readily able to identify risks and opportunities in fuel and fire management. These broad-scale simulations also incorporate current burnt area and fuel load data available through public access fire management web resources and encourage users to think about these datasets in a more dynamic way through interaction and discussion. These simulations have been used extensively to support Indigenous land management workshops.

Indigenous land management

Projected with savanna fire management simulations, the landscapes have captivated participants and allowed senior people to share lived experiences of fire on country with younger generations and non-Indigenous colleagues and teaching staff. Empowerment of indigenous knowledge in a field dominated by hard scientific data. Many of these applications have been conducted 'out-bush' at night under the star creating a 'digital campfire' bringing people in to discuss fire management.

Current project include support for Dambimangari indigenous rangers in the Kimberley (W.A.), Mimal rangers in central Arnhem land (N.T.) and Olkola rangers in Cape York (QLD). For each of these groups, custom simulations and 3D landscapes have been produced to support their education, training and outreach objectives. Training and ongoing mentoring has also been provided to assure sustainability.


Community Engagement

The models have been used by the Northern Territory Government Bushfires Council on the  rural show circuit to explain fire management and across the N.T. Northern Savannas. A purpose-built darkroom was created within the government NRM tent to assist with engaging the public around best practice fire management.

A rural block fire simulation using a sand base and 3D printed houses is also currently being used as a standard tool kit for community and school outreach by Bushfires NT and NT government weeds branch.

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