Burning to learn

New research on fire, its causes and its behavior is helping scientists lessen the risks that burning poses

By Stephen Ornes, 15:25 PM March 13, 2014

In central California’s Yosemite National Park, it doesn’t take much to set the forest on fire. A discarded cigarette. A match. Or, as is often the case, a bolt of lightning. On July 31, 2011, thunder boomed as a severe storm pelted the park. The lightning struck trees, igniting several fires. Firefighters with the National Park Service quickly extinguished three fires. But they let a fourth burn on.

 

They thought it might actually do more good than harm.

 

That fire began burning through a rugg...

Source URL: https://student.societyforscience.org/article/burning-learn?mode=topic&context=39