Impact & Successful Applications
We employ a vast range of mathematical and statistical techniques and computational science to investigate a diverse range of fundamental and real-world problems. The interdisciplinary nature of our work and the constraints imposed by dealing with genuine practical problems make this a challenging and rewarding area for research.
Our strengths lie in:
- bushfire dynamics and combustion modelling
- to better understand the dynamics and impact of large bushfires driven by extreme fire weather.
- to better understand the complex behaviour of flame fronts, particularly at the onset of instabilities.
- ecological modelling
- statistical: modelling the survival of Little Penguins noting the impact of climate change and banding and tag recovery studies of Southern Bluefin Tuna.
- deterministic and stochastic: developed and analysed models for stressed ecosystems and environments with nutrient enrichment and depletion.
- nonlinear dynamics
- chemical and bio-reactor engineering – determine efficient operating conditions for reactors using nonlinear dynamical systems theory.
- complex warfighting – the development, simulation, and analysis of mathematical models of warfighting to provide insight into the organisational design best suited to optimise Command and Control and success in contested environments.
Our bushfire research has been incorporated into the Australian curriculum for firefighter training and into the standard operating procedures for fire behaviour analysts working in the country’s rural fire agencies. Our research is also being used to develop operational tools for fire managers. We provide technical expertise to various inquiries, including those concerning the disastrous 2019/20 Australian bushfires.
The quality and impact of our research is made possible by our success in obtaining competitive grants and attracting and graduating high-quality HDR students. We regularly collaborate with national and international researchers who enhance our world-wide reputation. An extensive number of our publications appear in important international journals.
We seek to improve the understanding of bushfire and associated processes and their relation to firefighter and community safety. This is achieved by conducting fundamental and applied research into bushfire behaviour and propagation, including coupled and dynamic effects, and developing scientifically rigorous models that integrate with fire safety and risk management systems. We are the only research group with a dedicated focus on understanding how dynamic fire behaviours influence firestorm development.
Research for complex warfighting is done in collaboration with the Defence Science and Technology Group (DST) of Australia and is linked to the DST STaR Shots (Science, Technology and Research Shots) strategy, specifically the agile Command and Control STaR shot.