Relevance of terpenoids on flammability of Mediterranean species: an experimental approach at a low radiant heat flux

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Della Rocca G, Madrigal J, Marchi E, Michelozzi M, Moya B, Danti R (2017) - Relevance of terpenoids on flammability of Mediterranean species: an experimental approach at a low radiant heat flux - i-Forests

One of the major factors influencing forest fuel combustion are terpenoids, a
fraction of flammable Biogenic Volatile Organic Compounds (BVOCs) produced
and stored by most Mediterranean species. The qualitative and quantitative
effect of terpenoids on flammability has been only partially explained. In this
study several major terpenoid-storing Mediterranean species (common cypress
and three pines) were considered and compared to Holm oak as a reference
non-storing species. The terpenoids were quantified via gas chromatography
(GC-MS) analysis from both live fine fuel (LFF) and litter samples, and the relations
between flammability and the terpenoids content were investigated by
categories (Monoterpenoids, oxygenated Monoterpenoids, Sesquiterpenoids).
The effect of fuel moisture content and species on ignition probability of LFF
was also explored. A very different ignition probability was observed at the
same fuel moisture content for the different species (Pinus spp. > C. sempervirens
> Q. ilex). The stored terpenoids explained 19% to 50% of the whole
flammability of both LFF and litter. Fuel moisture content (FMC) did not substantially
change the relative effect of terpenoids on flammability, except in
C. sempervirens. Monoterpenoids do not seem to significantly affect flammability,
while sesquiterpenoids greatly influenced most flammability components,
though their relative effect varied among species. A relation between
storing structure of terpenoids and flammability was suggested. The results of
this study indicate that isoprenoids should be included in physical models of
the prediction and propagation of wildfire in Mediterranean vegetation as significant
factors in driving flammability.

Más información
SCI: 
SI
Tipo de Publicación: 
Volumen: 
10
Página Inicial: 
766
Página Final: 
775

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