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Rodman Ray Linn

Rod Linn

Phone (505) 665-6254


  • Computational Physics and Applied Mathematics
  • Numerical modeling
  • Coupled multi-physics simulations
  • Computational fluid dynamics (CFD)
  • Direct numerical simulations of fluid turbulence
  • Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS)
  • Earth and Space Sciences
  • Geoscience


  • Experience studying and modeling atmospheric phenomena involving strong coupling such as passive, high temperature, urban, and explosive dispersion, wind/vegetation interaction, wildfires, and most recently wind interactions with wind turbines.
  • Demonstrated success in developing internationally recognized, leading-edge computational tools to study wildfire behavior.
  • Strong background in theoretical turbulence, computational fluid mechanics, and heat transfer.
  • Experience leading teams of researchers in a funding environment, which is 100% soft funding.
  • Successful project, team, and group (60 people) management experience.
  • Experience taking lead roles in multi-institutional and multi-national research projects.


Ph.D.  Mechanical Engineering, 1997

New Mexico State University (NMSU), Las Cruces, NM

Dissertation Title: A Transport Model for Studying Wildfire Behavior

Thesis Advisors:  Francis Harlow and O’Neill Burchett

M.S.    Mechanical Engineering, 1993

University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign (UIUC), IL

Thesis Title: Effects of Modeled Terms In the Reynolds-Stress Transport Equations

B.S.     Mechanical Engineering, 1991

NMSU, Las Cruces, NM

Graduated with Highest Honors in College of Engineering


LANL Positions

Team Leader for Atmospheric Modeling and Weapons Phenomenology Team

Earth and Environmental Sciences Division

Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, NM

Within: Computational Earth Sciences Group 2008-present

Within:  Atmosphere, Climate, and Environmental Dynamics Group 2004-2008

Within:  Atmospheric Sciences Group 2000-2004

  • Established priorities, coordinated projects and budgets, and led a variety of technical projects for the team.
  • Led and performed program development activities for projects that were contained within the team and contributed to those that extended outside the team.
  • Inspired this team to continually expand the application of its tools into new fields of study and continually improve those tools including the complete reformulation computational models to take advantage of new computing architectures

Deputy Group Leader for Atmospheric, Climate, and Environmental Dynamics Group

Earth and Environmental Sciences Division

Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, NM

2/2005 – 10/2008

  • Worked with the group leader to define multidisciplinary technical directions for the group and to solve personnel, inter-project, and inter-group conflicts.
  • Coordinated and integrated projects and budgets for a group of approximately 50 individuals (technical staff, post-docs, students, technicians, and administrative group members).
  • Performed project and program development activities for the group.
  • Served as acting group leader for short and extended periods at the request of the division office or group leader

Technical Staff Member, Atmosphere, Climate, and Environmental Dynamics Group

Earth and Environmental Sciences Division

Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, NM

1997 – Present

  • Led the development, implementation, testing, and application of computational models for wildfire behavior (FIRETEC).
  • Led the development of LANL’s WindBlade model for studying the multiscale interaction between wind turbines and surrounding complex wind patterns.
  • Led the extension and application of FIRETEC to urban fire conflagration and firestorms
  • Led the application of HIGRAD to study coupled ecosystem atmosphere coupling
  • Performed critical roles in developing computational and analytical models for complex multi-phase atmospheric processes.
  • Used stochastic representations and PDF methods to describe physical behaviors.
  • Mentored students.

Adjunct Professor/Instructor for Undergraduate Engineering

University of New Mexico - Los Alamos Branch College/UNM Extended University, 1999 – Present

  • Taught undergraduate Civil and Mechanical Engineering courses in Mechanics, Mechanics of Materials, Fluid Dynamics, and Heat transfer (normally 2 semester courses per year)

Professional Societies

  • DOE representative to the OSTP Wildland Fire Science and Technology Task Force (6/2014 – present)
  • LANL Institutional Computing Working Group (2011 – present)
  • Associate Editor for International Journal of Wildland Fire, 2005 – Present
  • Associate Director of California Institute for Hazards Research (2007-2011)
  • NWEUG/WESC Nuclear Weapons Effects Fire Subgroup Co-Leader (DoD, DOE, AWE partners), 2004 – 2011
  • International Advisory Committee for FIRE PARADOX Project (funded by the European Union), 2006 – 2010
  • NOAA Fire Weather Research Working Group (2007 – 2009)
  • New Mexico State University Mechanical Engineering Academy
    • Board of Directors, 2005 – Present
    • Industrial Advisory Committee, 2007 – Present (Chair 2008-present)
  • Subject Matter Expert for ARPA-E review panel (2009-2010)
  • Science Foundation Arizona Review Committee, Subject Matter Expert Wind Energy (2008)
  • Active member of the National Core Fire Science Caucus


  • Principal Investigator on 2003 R&D 100 Award-winning Entry: FIRETEC, A Physics-Based Wildfire Model
  • Principal Investigator on 2004 Federal Laboratory Consortium Far-West and Mid-Continent Regions’ Outstanding Technology Award
  • Selected to be a Member of NMSU Mechanical Engineering Academy, 2004 (Elected to the Board of Directors 2005-2006, and currently serving as the chair of this department’s Industrial Advisory Committee 2007-2009)
  • Highest Honor Distinction for being the top graduate from College of Engineering (NMSU, fall 1991)
  • Departmental Fellowship (UIUC, 1992 – 1993)
  • National Dean’s List (1989 – 1990)
  • Regent’s Scholarship (NMSU, 1988 – 1991), Excel Scholarship (University of New Mexico [UNM],, 1987 – 1988)
  • Dean’s List (UNM, 1987 – 1988 and NMSU, 1988 – 1991)


Linn, R.R. and E. Koo (2011). Determining Effects of Turbine Blades on Fluid Motion. US, Los Alamos National Security, LLC. 7953563.

Linn, R.R. and E. Koo (2012). Determining Effects of Turbine Blades on Fluid Motion. US, Los Alamos National Security, LLC. 8170813.



[Cunningham, P * Linn, RR], "Numerical simulations of grass fires using a coupled atmosphere-fire model: Dynamics of fire spread", JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-ATMOSPHERES, Vol.112, iss.D5, D05108, MAR 14 2007.

[Linn, R * Winterkamp, J * Edminster, C * Colman, JJ * Smith, WS], "Coupled influences of topography and wind on wildland fire behaviour", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.16, iss.2, p.183-195, 2007.

[Colman, JJ * Linn, RR], "Separating combustion from pyrolysis in HIGRAD/FIRETEC", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.16, iss.4, p.493-502, 2007.

[Konovalov, V. * Dupuy, J.-L. * Pimont, F. * Morvan, D. * Linn, R.R.], "Assessment of the plume theory predictions of crown scorch or crown fire initiation using transport models", WIT Transactions on Modelling and Simulation, Vol.48, p.593-601, 2009.

[Pimont, F. * Dupuy, J.-L. * Linn, R.R.], "Impact of fuel-break structure on fire behaviour simulated with FIRETEC", WIT Transactions on Modelling and Simulation, Vol.48, p.613-622, 2009.

[Pimont, F * Dupuy, JL * Linn, RR * Dupont, S], "Validation of FIRETEC wind-flows over a canopy and a fuel-break", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.18, iss.7, p.775-790, 2009.

[Linn, RR * Winterkamp, JL * Weise, DR * Edminster, C], "A numerical study of slope and fuel structure effects on coupled wildfire behaviour", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.19, iss.2, p.179-201, 2010.

[Clark, MM * Fletcher, TH * Linn, RR], "A sub-grid, mixture-fraction-based thermodynamic equilibrium model for gas phase combustion in FIRETEC: development and results", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.19, iss.2, p.202-212, 2010.

[Cassagne, N. * Pimont, F. * Dupuy, J.-L. * Linn, R.R. * Ma?rell, A. * Oliveri, C. * Rigolot, E.], "Using a fire propagation model to assess the efficiency of prescribed burning in reducing the fire hazard", Ecological Modelling, Vol.222, iss.8, p.1502-1514, 24 April 2011.

[Pimont, F * Dupuy, JL * Linn, RR * Dupont, S], "Impacts of tree canopy structure on wind flows and fire propagation simulated with FIRETEC", ANNALS OF FOREST SCIENCE, Vol.68, iss.3, p.523-530, APR 2011.

[Dupuy, JL * Linn, RR * Konovalov, V * Pimont, F * Vega, JA * Jimenez, E], "Exploring three-dimensional coupled fire-atmosphere interactions downwind of wind-driven surface fires and their influence on backfires using the HIGRAD-FIRETEC model", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.20, iss.6, p.734-750, 2011.

[Linn, RR * Canfield, JM * Cunningham, P * Edminster, C * Dupuy, JL * Pimont, F], "Using periodic line fires to gain a new perspective on multi-dimensional aspects of forward fire spread", AGRICULTURAL AND FOREST METEOROLOGY, Vol.157, p.60-76, MAY 15 2012.

[Linn, R * Anderson, K * Winterkamp, J * Brooks, A * Wotton, M * Dupuy, JL * Pimont, F * Edminster, C], "Incorporating field wind data into FIRETEC simulations of the International Crown Fire Modeling Experiment (ICFME): preliminary lessons learned", CANADIAN JOURNAL OF FOREST RESEARCH-REVUE CANADIENNE DE RECHERCHE FORESTIERE, Vol.42, iss.5, p.879-898, MAY 2012.

[Koo, E * Linn, RR * Pagni, PJ * Edminster, CB], "Modelling firebrand transport in wildfires using HIGRAD/FIRETEC", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.21, iss.4, p.396-417, 2012.

[Marino, E. * Dupuy, J.-L. * Pimont, F. * Guijarro, M. * Hernando, C. * Linn, R.], "Fuel bulk density and fuel moisture content effects on fire rate of spread: A comparison between FIRETEC model predictions and experimental results in shrub fuels", Journal of Fire Sciences, Vol.30, iss.4, p.277-299, July 2012.

[Pimont, F * Dupuy, JL * Linn, RR], "Coupled slope and wind effects on fire spread with influences of fire size: a numerical study using FIRETEC", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.21, iss.7, p.828-842, 2012.

[Balakumar, B.J. * Ammerman, C. * Pol, S. * Linn, R. * Koo, E. * Ellis, G. * Park, G. * Farinholt, K. * Alarcon, R.C.], "Wind turbines research at Los Alamos National Laboratory - Integrating experimental aerodynamics, sensing, structural mechanics and numerical simulations", 6th AIAA Theoretical Fluid Mechanics Conference, 2011.

[Vega, J. A. * Jimenez, E. * Dupuy, J. -L. * Linn, R. R.], "Effects of flame interaction on the rate of spread of heading and suppression fires in shrubland experimental fires", INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol.21, iss.8, p.950-960, 2012.

[Linn, Rodman R. * Sieg, Carolyn H. * Hoffman, Chad M. * Winterkamp, Judith L. * McMillin, Joel D.], "Modeling wind fields and fire propagation following bark beetle outbreaks in spatially-heterogeneous pinyon-juniper woodland fuel complexes", AGRICULTURAL AND FOREST METEOROLOGY, Vol.173, p.139-153, MAY 15 2013.

[Shafii, Sohail * Obermaier, Herald * Linn, Rodman * Koo, Eunmo * Hlawitschka, Mario * Garth, Christoph * Hamann, Bernd * Joy, Kenneth I.], "Visualization and Analysis of Vortex-Turbine Intersections in Wind Farms", IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON VISUALIZATION AND COMPUTER GRAPHICS, Vol.19, iss.9, p.1579-1591, SEP 2013.

[Cunningham, Philip * Linn, Rodman R. * Koo, Eunmo * Wilson, Cathy J.], "Large-Eddy Simulations of Air Flow and Turbulence within and around Low-Aspect-Ratio Cylindrical Open-Top Chambers", JOURNAL OF APPLIED METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATOLOGY, Vol.52, iss.8, p.1716-1737, AUG 2013.

[Canfield, J. M. * Linn, R. R. * Sauer, J. A. * Finney, M. * Forthofer, Jason], "A numerical investigation of the interplay between fireline length, geometry, and rate of spread", AGRICULTURAL AND FOREST METEOROLOGY, Vol.189, p.48-59, JUN 1 2014.


Documents and Files