The Landscape Decision Support System (DSS)

The DSS will assist land managers and communities to explore potential changes in multiple landscape values associated with fire regimes, changing climate, and alternative management practices.

The Landscape Decision Support System (DSS) is a prototype knowledge and evaluation system that, when fully developed will assist land managers and communities to explore potential changes in multiple landscape values associated with fire regimes, changing climate, and alternative management practices.

The DSS utilises two models to assess changes in landscape values – the fire regime simulator FROST and the forest landscape vegetation dynamics model LANDIS-II. Each year FROST first simulates fire in the landscape in response to particular climate, suppression, and prescribed burning inputs. LANDIS-II then simulates changes in forest structure and composition over time in response to this fire and LANDIS-II modelled harvesting (i.e. it enacts vegetation mortality, regeneration, and growth), and then feeds this vegetation information back into FROST for a successive fire year. 

These yearly FROST and LANDIS-II outputs are also fed into FRAPPE (part of the FROST Family software). FRAPPE uses modelled algorithm(s) to analyse how these outputs impact different landscape values of interest. These landscape values include:

  • Biodiversity (including ecological fire groups, Wet forest, ecological refuges, Leadbeater possums and Greater Gliders)
  • Carbon
  • Experienced High Conservation Values
  • Infrastructure loss (e.g., roads, powerlines, industrial building, hospitals)
  • People and House loss
  • Geometric Mean of Species Abundance
  • Shannon’s diversity and Fractal dimension index
  • Soil Erosion Rates
  • Major Water Contamination Events
  • Visual aesthetics viewshed

In this way, the DSS brings together fire regimes and landscape vegetation changes to explore how changes in future climate and management practices may impact on important landscape values.

FRAPPE’s values of interest and the LANDIS-II simulation modelling brings together years of research conducted by experts in their field. These scientists are from Melbourne University’s School of Ecosystems and Forest Sciences and include Prof. Trent Penman, Dr. Julian Di Stefano, Dr. Holly Sitters, Dr. Lauren Bennett, Dr. Craig Nitschke, Ass Prof. Gary Sheridan, Dr. Sabine Kasel, Dr. Jane Cawson, Dr. Rebecca Ford, Dr. Kathryn Williams, Dr. Andrea Rawluk and Prof. Patrick Lane. The DSS project is being funded by the Department of Land Water and Planning and supported by the whole team at FLARE.

Projects that have applied our software

Restoration of eucalypt forest in Wilsons Promontory National Park- Implications for forest values and site and landscape flammability

Wilsons Promontory provides an example of how repeated short interval fires can prevent the regeneration of a Eucalyptus canopy in a range of ecological vegetation classes. The ‘destocking’ of forests can dramatically alter the composition, ...

Firebrand ignition of building materials

Firebrands are small, often smoldering embers which break off of vegetative or structural materials during wildland fires and can loft up to several kilometers ahead of the main fire front, igniting new spot fires. They have been found to be ...

Understanding the origin and development of extreme and mega bushfires

Extreme and megafires result in significant damage to property and infrastructure and are associated with large suppression costs. These events form when separate fires merge. Their increase occurrence in recent seasons highlights the ...

Our other software

PHOENIX Rapidfire

PHOENIX Rapidfire

PHOENIX is a fire simulation model that predicts the potential progression of fire across virtual landscapes under different weather and fire suppression scenarios.
FROST family

FROST family

FROST- a Fire Regimes and Operations Simulation Tool – is a risk-based fire regime simulator for assessing the impacts of fire and land management on human and environmental values across landscapes.

Calling for PhD Candidates…