Fire Engineering

Overview

Fire Engineering

The principles of Fire Safety Engineering have been standardized in 1997 in UK with the standard DD240-1 “Fire Safety Engineering in Buildings”. This standard has evolved over the years until its replacement in 2001 by the first edition of BS 7974. The latest version of BS 7974 is now the 2019 edition, supported by the PD 7974 series of Published Documents (PD).

The definition of fire engineering contained within BS 7974: 2019 is “the application of scientific and engineering principles to the protection of people, property and the environment”.

Efectis started implementing these fire engineering principles in the 90’s with the introduction of new numerical tools used in combination with experimental approaches undertaken within Efectis fire laboratories.

In a performance-based approach, Fire Safety Engineering is used to verify / justify that the fire safety measures, identified within the fire strategy, are appropriate to achieve the required fire safety objectives set out by the relevant standards and guidelines.

Efectis has the capability (accumulated knowledge and experience, skills, software and models, small to large scale test rigs) to analyse the performance of products, systems or buildings within the legislative framework, and to carry out third-party reviews.

Efectis covers all fire safety technical topics, such as structural behaviour, compartmentation, smoke control and ventilation, fire suppression systems, external fire spread, evacuation, environmental protection from industrial sites, fire brigade access and facilities, wild fire.

Efectis is able to assist with strategic advice, review of applicable legislation, preventive measures developed via tailored fire safety solutions, on-site inspections and assessments. Our work is based on a commitment to help clients and communities and provide them with a responsive approach to solve their fire safety challenges.

fire safety design

Buildings must be designed to provide an acceptable level of fire safety and minimize the risk in the event of a fire.  The objective of fire safety design is to:

  • minimize injury to persons
  • allow the intervention of firefighters
  • limit material and economic damage

To achieve these objectives, Efectis UK/Ireland can provide you with the skills and expertise throughout your project, from design to construction. Our advice will include, but not limited to:

  • regulatory compliance
  • the performance of materials
  • fire behaviour of structures, qfire detection and suppression
  • smoke control conditions according to the tenability conditions (toxicity, opacity, temperature and radiation…)
  • evacuation, modelling of movement and means of escape
  • tailored fire safety design to enhance safety and ensure cost reduction
Fire Strategy review

Fire strategy is a way to show the fire safety objectives for an existing and new buildings are achieved. The best approach is to develop fire strategy during the construction phase of your buildings and gain inputs of our experts throughout the process to eliminate confusions and mistakes.

Efectis UK/Ireland fire engineers have substantial experience in developing fire strategy report and work to achieve clients’ objectives and requirements. Our team can review the existing fire strategy and provide solutions in case of detecting faults.

The sooner we involve to ensure fire safety of your building the better the outcome might be so that it is highly recommended to contact our engineering team at earliest possible.

Structural and smoke fire modelling

structural fire engineering

Efectis is offering our services in structural fire engineering, which is important to ensure that the structural elements will stand for a reasonable time in case of fire. Efectis is able to perform all Fire Safety Engineering (FSE) applied to structural fire behaviour for assessing building collapse modes, taking into account their building functions (storage, industrial, residential) or their different types of structure (steel, concrete, timber, aluminium or any composite ones).

Analyses are based on fire development and fire spread modelling in order to predict the structural fire behaviour of the buildings.

Efectis use specific modelling tools such as: fire development tools (simplified model, zone model, CFD model like FDS) and Finite Element Model for heat transfer and/or for mechanical calculations at elevated temperature(SAFIR, ANSYS, LENAS, DIANA). Validation and Verification of the software performed by Efectis on theoretical and experimental cases comfort the use of software by Efectis fire engineers.

Combination with testing evaluation is also managed by Efectis in relation with the Efectis fire laboratories.

fire development and smoke propagation

Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modelling is a widely used tool in fire safety engineering. It is commonly used as an analysis tool, as it has the ability to handle complex geometries and fire characteristics.

Through our knowledge and experience, we can provide you with answers by creating a virtual copy of your construction, simulating several scenarios of potential fire propagation in order to make your building more secure in the event of a fire.

Efectis has got a large database of fire development scenarios based on experimental data.

Validation and Verification of the software performed by Efectis on theoretical and experimental cases comfort the use of software by Efectis fire engineers. Combination with testing evaluation (small scales or large scales) is also managed by Efectis in relation with the Efectis fire laboratories.

hydrogen safety

Efectis is active in the hydrogen safety area, and our staffs contributed in several hydrogen safety projects in UK and Europe. Efectis is carrying out studies related to the hydrogen buses for a couple of cities in France. These studies aim at assessing the impact of a H2 bus on fire on the building structure (impact of jet fires on the structure and compartmentation of the building) and also on external fire spread (impact of heat flux caused by the fire (bus + jet fire) on the surroundings of the building.

Efectis is involved in different manufacturer projects linked to the use of the composite materials in the hydrogen tank. As a major player in fire testing and consulting, Efectis is in close industrial and research contact with PFP systems’ manufacturers, companies involved in the production and handling of hydrogen (e.g. Air Liquid; ULEMCO), project developers and engineering groups involved in current or proposed hydrogen projects (e.g. GEXCON; APRIA Systems), National and International technical and standardization committees, i.e. CEN TC 127 WG3; French IMO committee X65M; ISO SC2 TC 92 WG8; WG11 & WG12; CEN TC 127; ISO TC 61; CEN TC 127; NATO STANAG 4602; IMO SDC, IMO SSE, and learning bodies/academic sectors working in hydrogen area (e.g. HySAFER Ulster University UK; University Central London UK, University of Cantabria Spain; Macquarie University Australia; University of Pizza Italy).

Our scope of services in hydrogen safety includes but not limited to:

quantitative risk assessment (qra)
Contribution in projects:
  • EPSRC SUPERGEN H2FC Hub (EP/J016454/1 and EP/P024807/1)
  • EPSRC SUPERGEN Challenge “Integrated safety strategies for onboard hydrogen storage” (EP/K021109/1)
  • Fuel Cell and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking “NET-Tools” (Grant Agreement No.736648)
hydrogen safety engineering tools development
contribution in projects
  • EPSRC SUPERGEN H2FC Hub (EP/J016454/1 and EP/P024807/1)
  • EPSRC SUPERGEN Challenge “Integrated safety strategies for onboard hydrogen storage” (EP/K021109/1)
  • European Regional Development Fund in the framework of the Interreg Atlantic programme “HYLANTIC” (EAPA_204/2016)
  • Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking (FCH2 JU) “HyTunnel-CS” (Grant agreement No. 826193)
computational fluid dynamics
contribution in projects
  • Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking (FCH2 JU) “HyTunnel-CS” (Grant agreement No. 826193)
fire safety research

Efectis is contributing in fire safety research activities in research projects:

  • CPD 0040120205 Fire Safety Balconies, Spandrels, and Glazing,
  • CPD 004121050 Research – Fire Safety Smoke and Toxicity,
  • CPD 004121103 Means of Escape in Residential Buildings,
  • CPD 004121108 Fire Safety Classification of External Wall Systems

For the the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) through a professional consortium with the partners from industry and academy, i.e. OFR Consultants Ltd., University College London (UCL), The University of Edinburgh, Efectis.

Efectis is leading or contributes European Projects form European Commission:

  • New European fire test for façade (RISE, BAM, Efectis, EMI, Unievrsity of Liège)
  • SI2.830108 –Eu firestat- closing gaps and pavng the way for pan-European fire safety efforts (Efectis, EuroFSA, CFS-CTIF, BAM,DBI, NFPA, Lund university, University of Edinburg, VFDB

Efectis has extensive research contribution to the evaluation of various PFP systems when exposed to the fire, e.g. jet fire, among which are:

Efectis has also an extensive research contribution in the experimental and numerical investigation of Grenfell Tower fire, i.e.

  • Reconstruction of Grenfell Tower fire. Part 1: Lessons from observations and determination of work hypotheses (https://doi.org/10.1002/fam.2766)
  • Reconstruction of Grenfell Tower fire. Part 2: A numerical investigation of the fire propagation and behaviour from the initial apartment to the façade (https://doi.org/10.1002/fam.2765)
  • Reconstruction of Grenfell Tower fire. Part 3 – Numerical simulation of the Grenfell Tower disaster: Contribution to the understanding of the fire propagation and behaviour during the vertical fire spread (https://doi.org/10.1002/fam.2763)
  • Reconstruction of the Grenfell Tower fire – Part 4: Contribution to the understanding of fire propagation and behaviour during horizontal fire spread (https://doi.org/10.1002/fam.2911)
  • Reconstruction of the Grenfell Tower Fire – Thermomechanical Analysis of Window Failure During the Grenfell Tower Disaster (https://doi.org/10.1007/s10694-020-00980-4)
Code consultancy

Building code evaluation, compliance review, conflict resolution

Failure to identify and demonstrate building code compliance creates risks that can hamper a project’s progress and/or subjects a facility to undue operational and legal risks.

Efectis code experts work as a part of your team to help incorporate the design details needed to comply with the codes and standards, no matter how unique the project. Whether you need to comply with a version of the ICC Code family, NFPA’s Life Safety Code (NFPA 101) and/or other locally adopted codes, standards or specifications, Efectis engineers have the experience to assist you.

  • Facility Design: Efectis has developed three products that allow everyone to focus on what really matters—the functional and operational needs of the owner.
    • Code Compliance Narratives summarize all of the major Building and Fire Safety requirements applicable to the project and how compliance will be achieved. Two revisions of the document are typical; The draft document serves as compliance verification and decision making tool for the design team. The final document is intended to be submitted to the reviewers as part of the design document package to make the plan review process substantially easier.
    • Code Compliance Plans are a sub-set of the design documents. These drawings illustrate the critical Building and Fire Safety design features including: construction type, height and area, rated construction, occupant load calculations, egress routes and capacity, travel distances, and other related features. (ADA and plumbing fixture capacity can also be included as an option).
    • Code Summary Matrix is a management tool created for use by project managers to identify each critical code compliance item, assign responsibility by disciplines or individually, track its status, and create an index to the drawings/documents that demonstrate compliance.
  • Variance/Equivalency Development and Negotiation: Need to incorporate new technology or unique design features not otherwise covered by the codes? Efectis’ code experts have the experience to help your project team develop a design approach that achieves the code’s intent and in doing so develops the documentation and presentation needed to submit the concepts for approval.

How can we help you?

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