Simeon Telfer’s project is measuring bushfire fuel using remote sensing and the effects of fuel on fire behaviour. The research will focus on Coastal Mallee Heath type which has been identified by South Australian fire managers as difficult to predict with current fire behaviour models. Coastal Mallee Heath dominates Kangaroo Island, which was devastated by bushfire in 2020 and is also found in other southern coastal areas of South Australia and Western Australia. The fuel structure may be similar to other high fuel load heathlands around Australia and possibly other countries, however this will need to be determined by the research.
Simeon has worked in fire management with National Parks and Wildlife in SA for nearly 10 years. He specialises in fire behaviour analysis and has been deployed to major fires in most states and territories of Australia, as well as Canada. Simeon has delivered training in meteorology and fire prediction to fire behaviour analysts around Australia. He was a key end-user for several Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC projects, particularly those focusing on fire behaviour and using remote sensing to improve our understanding of bushfires.