FireStar3D is a CFD code that solves the conservation equations of the coupled system composed of the vegetation and the surrounding gaseous medium. The model accounts for the various degradation mechanisms of the vegetation (drying, pyrolysis, and heterogeneous combustion) as well as for the different interactions between the gas mixture (ambient air + combustion products) and the vegetation cover such as drag force, heat transfer by convection and radiation, and mass transfer. The development of FireStar3D started at M2P2 laboratory in 2006 in the framework of FireParadox – a four-year European program aiming to study the behavior of forest fires and the management of forest/habitat interface in Mediterranean regions. Its development was then carried on in close collaboration between Aix-Marseille University, the Lebanese University, and Toulon University. This collaboration resulted in many joint publications as well as two PhD theses and several Master theses.
The physical model of FireStar3D will be described, the outlines of the used numerical method will be presented, and the different studies carried out using FireStar3D will be summarized.