Forest Fire Simulator

The Forest

Colour Scheme

The cells follow a 7 colour cycle, starting with light green (grass), maturing into forest (dark green) which is burnt to ash (black) where the grass can regrow. The probability of a cell changing colour is controlled in the settings section.


Use this section to update the probabilities used in the simulation.

Fire → Establised  
Establised → Embers  
Embers → Ash  
Ash → Shoots  
Shoots → Shrub  
Shrub → Mature  


This page simulates a forest fire using a cellular automaton. There are seven types of cell which represent the stages of vegitation growth and fire progression. Vegitation starts with fresh shoots and evolves to mature forest. Mature forest then has the possibility of catching fire. Once alight a fire passes through four stages, freshly alight, burning, embers and ash. The cycle is completed by the possibility that fresh shoots will sprout from the ash.

These transitions are all determined by the probabilies entered into the table above.

The simulation is made more interesting by the possibily that fire may spread from freshly lit squares to adjacent mature forest.

The "ignite" probability determines how often a mature tree will catch fire. This needs to be quite low, otherwise the forest will never grow.

The "spread" probability determines how often a furiously burning cell will ignite adjacent trees. This needs to be around 0.2 or higher or the fires will never get going.

The script

Cellular Automata Index Page

Other pages

(c) John Whitehouse 2014 - 2020