Design Fires Project


The Characterisation of fire for Design Purposes project was undertaken by BRE's Fire and Risk Sciences (FRS) for the UK governments Department of the Transport, Local Government and the Regions (DTLR) over a period of four years. The projects aim was to obtain quantitative data on the growth rates of a number of realistic design fires so the that data can then be exploited by fire safety engineers, designers and regulators in the design of fire safety systems.

The object of the project was:

To establish a database of specific fire characteristics for at least 12 realistic fire scenarios; characteristics to include heat release rates, smoke production rates, CO/ CO2 ratios and gas concentration levels with and with out sprinklers in operation.

Fire engineering assessments frequently depend on assumptions made about the rate of the fire growth. This can be relevant to the design of the means of escape, particularly where smoke control is involved, as well as to the assessment of structural fire resistance. As there are a limited number of accepted design fires at present, and their applicability to a particular situation is uncertain, this data is therefore an important influence in developing a consensus on the underlying design fire assumptions.