LARGE ENOUGH TO DELIVER
SMALL ENOUGH TO CARE
The purpose of structural fire engineering is to ensure structural members or elements to withstand its structural integrity during a fire condition. It may not be possible to give an element complete fire protection in terms of time, but the element has its capability to give fire resistance to withstand in the fire. All materials progressively lose their strength and their ability to support a load when they are heated. If the structural components in a building are heated sufficiently, the building may collapse. The consequences of such a collapse may vary depending on its individual and overall structural components. Generally, the main components of a structure are expected to exhibit fire resistance proportionate to the nature of the perceived risk, and the nature of the risk is usually assessed based on the size and proposed use of the building.
The design of building structural elements for fire resistance is based on the calculation of fire severity of compartments (based on fire load, dimension, ventilation and lining) and effects of fire severity on building structural components. Accordingly, appropriate fire resistive components are selected. There are two different stages of a fire scenario, which need to be considered in the fire safety design of buildings about building materials and structures. These are the initial and fully developed fire. In the initial stages of a fire, the building content, e.g., furniture is of major importance both for the initiation of the fire and its development. Surface linings also play an important role in the initial fire, especially in escape routes. In the fully developed fire, the performance of loadbearing and separating structures is important to limit the fire to the room or fire compartment of origin and called the fire resistance of the structural element. Due to the inadequate fire resistance of structural elements, many buildings collapse due to excessive fire load causing massive losses of life and property. The collapse of the World Trade Centre, USA is a famous example for quoting the importance of structural behaviour during the fully developed fire.
Fire Check Consultants have the expertise to undertake finite element modelling of structures at elevated temperatures. Our engineers can assess worst credible fire scenarios using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modelling to develop time-temperature curves to utilize in finite element models to assess the performance of structures under thermal stress. The models can assess moment and load distribution through the structure to determine if additional fire safety and fire protection systems are required. The model results are used to demonstrate reduced fire resistance level of the structural components with the performance compliances.