Forest Investment Account

Abstract of FII Project R2003-120

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Evaluating Numerical Wind Predication Models in Complex Forest Topography as a Precursor to Large Scale Wind Mapping for Blowdown Mitigation

Author(s): Sieben, Brian (Cirrus Environmental Consulting)
Subject: Forestry, Landscape ecology, Technology/GIS/Modeling/Remote Sensing
Series: Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program


Despite being the dominant disturbance regime in coastal BC forests and responsible for significant blowdown losses, wind is poorly understood. This study will refine our ability to estimate winds at unmeasured sites. Hourly modelled wind data (from the MC2, MM5 and UW-NMS numerical weather models at four resolutions) and measured climate station wind data will be archived over the winter 2002 storm season. Gust factors will be determined for modeled winds, then modeled wind speed and direction values will be compared to measured winds at climate stations to determine the most accurate model for use in coastal BC. The models will be adjusted for the local surface roughness of the terrain, in an attempt to improve their accuracy. Knowledge gained in this project will be used to determine and map the frequency of extreme wind events across the landscape. This will help forest managers predict which areas are most vulnerable to blowdown.

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Updated September 08, 2005 

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