Trees are the bane of my existence. They get between me and my resources that someone put in the ground. There are two ways to remove trees quickly and gain access to the minerals that feed rocket launches:
- Use construction bots in a personal roboport along with a deconstruction blueprint.
- Use weapons to destroy them.
Note that I said "quickly," so chopping them down does not make the list.
For a large, dense forest, nothing beats the good old flame thrower followed by a deconstruction blueprint to remove the burnt-out husks. However, it can take some time. Experimentation has shown that removing a lot of trees quickly is not as simple as a quick spurt of liquid fire:
If trees are not dense, the fire may not spread and burn the whole forest to the ground.
Sometimes, the fire seems to burn out without spreading even if there are other trees in close proximity. This may be related to the amount of fuel used on the tree.
I have not been able to find any clear explanation for how fire interacts with trees: how exactly does tree density affect spreading of the fire? How does the amount of fuel or time spent burning affect the propensity for a fire to spread? Does it matter if I ignite multiple trees in different locations, or will a single fire spread and consume the whole forest just as quickly?
What is the most efficient method, expressed in terms of time spent, for ensuring that a forest fire spreads quickly and burns out as many trees as possible in as little time as possible?
Note: while I acknowledge other methods of tree removal and linked to another question about the same topic, this question is specifically scoped to burning trees quickly. Nukes are fun, and there are other weapons that work. However, I want to use my trusty flame thrower... of arboreal justice.