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Gollner, Michael J.

Gollner, Michael J.
Associate Professor, Ph.D.
Affiliate Assistant Professor, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
Affiliate Assistant Professor, Dept. of Aerospace Engineering
FPE Laboratory Safety Officer
Dept. of Fire Protection Engineering
3104A J.M. Patterson Building, College Park, MD 20742

Research Interests 

  • Wildland and Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) Fires
  • Buoyancy-Driven Fluid Dynamics
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Fire Dynamics
  • Combustion
  • Material Flammability


  • Assistant Professor (2012-Present), University of Maryland, College Park
  • Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant (2008-2012), University of California, San Diego


  • 2010 – 2012 Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, San Diego
    Thesis: Studies on Upward Flame Spread
    Advisor: Prof. Forman A. Williams
  • 2010 M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, San Diego
    Thesis: A Fundamental Approach towards Storage Commodity Classification
    Advisor: Prof. Forman A. Williams
  • 2008 B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, San Diego

Honors and Awards 

  • 2017 International Association for Fire Safety Science Early Career Award
  • 2016 National Science Foundation Early Career Award
  • 2015 Best Workshop Paper, International Conference on Computational Science
  • 2015 Distinguished Paper, 35th International Symposium on Combustion
  • 2014 3 Readers and Editors Choice Awards, HPCwire Magazine
  • 2013 Jack Watts Award, Outstanding Reviewer for Fire Technology
  • 2012 Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, MAE Department, UC San Diego
  • 2011 Best Poster Award, 10th International Symposium on Fire Safety Science
  • 2011 Best Fire Science Image Award, 10th International Symposium on Fire Safety Science
  • 2011 3rd Place, Science Art Competition, US National Combustion Meeting, Atlanta, GA
  • 2010 Teaching Assistant Excellence Award, MAE Dept., University of California, San Diego
  • 2010 Gordon Scholar, Jacobs School of Engineering, University of California, San Diego
  • 2010 Chancellor’s Award for Sustainability, University of California, San Diego
  • 2010 Recipient, Student Research Grant, SFPE Educational and Scientific Foundation
  • 2010 Honorable Mention, Graduate Student Researcher Program, National Science Foundation
  • 2010 Rae K. Hepps Graduate Fellowship, University of California, San Diego

Professional Memberships 

  • The Combustion Institute, Member
  • International Association of Fire Safety Science, Member
  • National Fire Protection Association, Member
  • Society of Fire Protection Engineers, Member
  • American Physical Society, Division of Fluid Mechanics, Member
  • The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

Selected Publications 

Recent Publications 

Upward Flame Spread over Discrete Fuels
Miller, C.H. and Gollner, M.J., Fire Safety Journal, 77, 2015, pp. 36-45.

The Influence of Buoyant Dynamics on Wildfire Spread
Finney, M.A., J.D. Cohen, J.M. Forthofer, S.S. McAllister, M.J. Gollner, D.J. Gorham, K. Saito, N.K. Akafuah, B.A. Adam, J.D. English., In Press in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Local Burning Rates and Heat Flux for Boundary Layer Diffusion Flames Under Forced Flow (PDF)
Singh, A.V. and Gollner, M.J., Accepted for publication in the AIAA Journal

A methodology for Estimation of Local Heat Fluxes in Steady Laminar Boundary Layer Diffusion Flames (PDF)
Singh, A.V. and Gollner, M.J., Combustion and Flame, 162, 2015, pp. 2214-2230.

Estimation of local mass burning rates for steady laminar boundary layer diffusion flames (PDF)
Singh, A.V. and Gollner, M.J., Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, 35(3), 2015, pp. 2527-2534.
Selected Distinguished Paper, Fire Colloquium, 35th International Symposium on Combustion

Correlations for Evaluation of Flame Spread over an Inclined Fuel Surface (PDF)
Huang, X. and Gollner, M.J., accepted to the Fire Safety Science, 11, 2014 (In Press).

Burning on Flat Wicks at Various Orientations (PDF Pre-print)
Zhang, Y., Bustamante, M.J., Gollner, M.J., Sunderland, P.B., Quintiere, J.G., Journal of Fire Sciences, 32(1), 2014, pp. 51-71.

On the heat transferred to the air surrounding a semi-infinite inclined hot plate (PDF)
Gollner, M. J., Sanchez, A. L., and Williams, F. A., Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 732, 2013, pp. 304-315.

Experimental Study of Upward Flame Spread of an Inclined Fuel Surface (PDF)
Gollner, M. J., Huang, X., Cobian, J., Rangwala, A. S. and Williams, F. A., Proc. Comb. Inst. 34(2), 2012, pp. 2531–2538.

Burning behavior of vertical matchstick arrays (PDF)
Gollner, M.J., Xie, Y., Lee, M., Nakamura, Y., and Rangwala, A.S.,  Comb. Sci. Tech. , 184(5), 2012, pp. 585–607.

Warehouse commodity classification from fundamental principles. Part II: flame height prediction (PDF)
Overholt, K., Gollner, M.J., Williams, F.A., Rangwala, A.S. and Perricone, J.,  Fire Safety Journal, Volume 46, Issue 6, August 2011, Pages 317-329.

Warehouse commodity classification from fundamental principles. Part I: commodity and burning rates (PDF)
Gollner, M.J., Overholt, K., Williams, F.A., Rangwala, A.S. and Perricone, J., Fire Safety Journal, Volume 46, Issue 6, August 2011, Pages 305-316.

Upward flame spread over corrugated cardboard (PDF)
Gollner, M.J., Williams, F.A., and Rangwala, A.S. Combustion and Flame 158. 7 (2011):1401-1412.

Reports and Other Articles

Pathways for Building Fire Spread at the Wildland Urban Interface (NFPA Site)
Gollner, M.J., Hakes, R., Caton, S. and Kohler, K., Fire Protection Research Foundation, National Fire Protection Association, March, 2015.

Literature Review on Hybrid Fire Suppression Systems
Raia, P. and Gollner, M.J., Fire Protection Research Foundation, National Fire Protection Association, May 2014.

Fire Safety Design and Sustainable Buildings: Challenges and Opportunities: Report of a National Symposium
Gollner, M.J., Kimball, A. and Vecchiarelli, T., Fire Protection Research Foundation, National Fire Protection Association, 2013.

The Flammability of a Storage Commodity
Gollner, M.J., Fire Protection Engineering Magazine, Society of Fire Protection Engineers, April 2014.

Related News 

FPE Well-Represented at 2018 International Combustion Symposium
Several faculty members and grad students traveled to Dublin to offer oral presentations on their research. August 22, 2018

Gollner Discusses West Coast Wildfire Phenomenon
Interviews conducted with multiple national media outlets. August 16, 2018

Wildfire safety from a fire engineering perspective
California is burning, but University of Maryland engineers can help. August 15, 2018

Fire Scientists, Including FPE's Michael Gollner, Offer Perspective on Wildfire Safety
Gollner along with FPE Grad Student, Daniel Gorham, Albert Simeoni of WPI, and Fred Mowrer of Cal Poly interviewed by Wildfire magazine. February 2, 2018

UMD Resilience Experts Share Best Practices with Chinese Delegation
The meeting was part of the Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program. November 20, 2017

UMD Researchers Receive Funding to Further Study ‘Fire Whirls’
Drs. Michael Gollner and Elaine Oran will lead the effort. October 18, 2017

Harnessing the Power of ‘Fire Whirls’ - A Review
FPE researchers publish analysis in Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics.  October 17, 2017

ME/FPE Ph.D. Student Raquel Hakes Receives Dual Fellowships
Hakes named Clark School Doctoral Fellow and National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow for a total of four years of support. October 2, 2017

UMD displays leadership role at IAFSS Symposium
Multiple FPE researchers recognized at international fire conference in Sweden. June 21, 2017

FPE PhD Candidate Sriram Bharath Wins 3rd Place in 2017 Dean's Master's Research Competition
Bharath was honored for his research on the recent Blue Whirl phenomenom. May 8, 2017

FPE Student Receives NSF Graduate Research Fellowship
Raquel Hakes will use the fellowship to focus on her wildfire research. May 3, 2017

UMD Hosts the Premier Combustion Science Meeting in the U.S.
A record number of attendees made the 2017 meeting the most successful in its history. May 1, 2017

Two FPE Faculty Members Granted Tenure, Promotion
Drs. Peter Sunderland and Michael Gollner will be promoted, effective August 1. April 19, 2017

FPE Researcher Ali Tohidi Receives IAFSS Best Thesis Award
Tohidi will offer a presentation on his research at the IAFSS Annual Symposium this summer. April 5, 2017

Gollner to Receive Proulx Award at 2017 IAFSS Symposium
International Association of Fire Safety Science will present Michael Gollner with an early career award at this summer's meeting. January 25, 2017

'Blue Whirl' Continues to Make Headlines
Accidental phenomenon of Michael Gollner's research group could hold key to carbon emission reduction. January 24, 2017

FPE student papers accepted at Combustion Symposium
5 Fire PhD students had their papers accepted into the 36th International Symposium on Combustion in Seoul.  October 26, 2016

NFPA Awards UMD Research in Pathways of Wildland-Urban Interface Fires
National Fire Protection Association recognizes UMD Fire Protection Engineering research team with 2016 Fire Protection Research Foundation Medal. June 27, 2016

Watch FPE Professor Michael Gollner Explain Boreal Fire Science
FPE Assistant Professor Michael Gollner recreates parts of the Fort McMurray blaze. May 23, 2016

Miller Awarded Green Fellowship for Collaborative Research on the Environment
ME student recognized for research on crop residue burning practices and their impact on the environment. January 25, 2016

New Research Reveals How Wildfires Spread
Findings may impact firefighting strategy, safety, effectiveness July 21, 2015

Designing Communities to Withstand Wildfires
Gollner group at the forefront of a mostly unexplored field of research. July 9, 2015

UMD to Host National Combustion Meeting
Trouvé chairs premier combustion science meeting. June 18, 2015

New Honor for WIFIRE
WIFIRE team wins Best Workshop Paper Award at ICCS 2015. June 18, 2015

Singh Among Top 2% of UMD Graduate Assistants
Ph.D. student honored with a 2015 Outstanding Graduate Assistant Award. May 6, 2015

Singh Receives Northrop Grumman Graduate Fellowship
Mechanical Engineering grad student Ajay Singh receives Northrop Grumman Graduate Fellowship in Engineering Education. March 11, 2015

Combustion Institute Honors Paper on Burning Rate Modeling Breakthrough
Singh’s work named Fire Research Colloquium Distinguished Paper. February 5, 2015

WIFIRE Wins 3 HPCwire Awards at Int’l High Performance Computing Conference
Cyberinfrastructure is designed to predict, monitor and mitigate wildfires. November 24, 2014

FPE Professors Highlight Work on Fire Resilence
Presentations part of Mpact Week's Multi-hazard Resilience session. November 14, 2014

New Video Features Wildfire Simulation System Co-Designed by FPE Professors
National Science Foundation profiles WIFIRE. August 6, 2014

Theodori Wins Bryan Graduate Research Assistantship Award
Future M.S. student will study data driven wildfire propagation modeling. May 14, 2014

Watch FPE Professor Michael Gollner Explain Fire Tornadoes and Wildfire Research
Segment was part of "Forces of Nature" week on Daily Planet. April 23, 2014

Fire Tornado! 4/16 on Discovery Channel in Canada, 4/23 on Science Channel in U.S.
FPE professor Michael Gollner featured in "Forces of Nature" week on Daily Planet. April 15, 2014

Faculty members elected to leadership roles; research image wins award. April 10, 2014

Tracking the Long-Term Cost of Wildfire Emissions
Gollner, Trouvé part of team backed by UMD Council on the Environment seed grant. March 14, 2014

New FPE Course: Wildland Fires: Science and Applications
Gollner introduces new course in Fire Protection Engineering in Fall, 2014. December 18, 2013

UMD/USFS Collaborative Project Featured in the New York Times
Everyone has been asking what can be done to combat wildfires. September 26, 2013

Prof. Gollner and Marshall Receive Dept. of Homeland Security Grant on Green Buildings
The grant is grant on the Quantification of Green Building Features on Firefighter Safety. September 26, 2013

Professors Gollner and Trouvé awarded Collaborative Grant with UCSD
The UCSD grant is on Real-time Wildland Fire Modeling September 26, 2013

SFPE Engineering Technology Conference and Annual Meeting
The Dept. of Fire Protection Engineering will be well represented at the Austin, TX conference. September 24, 2013

Colin Miller Wins the 2013 John L. Bryan GRA Award
Fire Protection Engineering student is recipient of John L. Bryan Graduate Research Assistantship award. July 2, 2013

UMD Fire Protection Engineering Students and Faculty Visit MFRI
Donning full firefighting gear and breathing apparatus, they were able to go inside an enclosure fire. April 29, 2013

Dr. Michael Gollner to Join FPE Faculty
Dr. Michael Gollner to join faculty of the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at the University of Maryland July 23, 2012