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iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry

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

Gianni Della Rocca (1), Javier Madrigal (2-3), Enrico Marchi (4), Marco Michelozzi (5), Bernabé Moya (6), Roberto Danti (1)   

iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry, Volume 10, Issue 5, Pages 766-775 (2017)
doi: https://doi.org/10.3832/ifor2327-010
Published: Sep 02, 2017 - Copyright © 2017 SISEF

Research Articles


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.

  Keywords


Fuel Moisture Content, Ignition, Live Fine Fuel, Terpene-storing Species, Terpenoids Content, Sesquiterpenoids, Litter

Authors’ address

(1)
Gianni Della Rocca
Roberto Danti
Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection, IPSP-CNR. Via Madonna del Piano 10, I-50019, Sesto Fiorentino, Firenze (Italy)
(2)
Javier Madrigal
INIA -CIFOR, Department of Silviculture and Forest Management. Crta. A Coruña Km 7.5, 28040 Madrid (Spain)
(3)
Javier Madrigal
iuFOR, Sustainable Forest Management Forest Institute UVa-INIA (Spain)
(4)
Enrico Marchi
Dipartimento di Gestione dei Sistemi Agrari, Alimentari e Forestali - GESAAF, University of Florence, v. San Bonaventura 13, I-50145, Firenze (Italy)
(5)
Marco Michelozzi
Institute of Biosciences and Bioresources, IBBR-CNR, Via Madonna del Piano 10, I-50019, Sesto Fiorentino, Firenze (Italy)
(6)
Bernabé Moya
Avenida de Naquera 36, 46130, Valencia (Spain)

Corresponding author

 

Citation

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. iForest 10: 766-775. - doi: 10.3832/ifor2327-010

Academic Editor

Davide Ascoli

Paper history

Received: Dec 21, 2016
Accepted: Jun 23, 2017

First online: Sep 02, 2017
Publication Date: Oct 31, 2017
Publication Time: 2.37 months

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