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EXPERIMENTS TO PROVIDE THE SCIENTIFIC-BASIS FOR LABORATORY STANDARD TEST METHODS FOR FIREBRAND EXPOSURE

Published

Author(s)

Samuel L. Manzello, Sayaka Suzuki

Abstract

Wildfires that spread into communities, referred to as Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) fires, have destroyed communities in numerous countries on several continents. Large outdoor fires in Japan mainly occur after earthquakes, which may initiate complex, intense urban fires. Firebrand ignition of structures is a major factor in WUI and urban fire spread. Standard laboratory test methods are lacking to evaluate and compare the performance of different building elements and/or vegetative fuels ability to resist firebrand ignition. The development of scientifically-based test standards is complex for these fires. Systematically evaluating individual building component vulnerabilities to ignition by firebrand showers using full-scale experiments are required. It is of important to determine full-scale assembly performance when exposed to firebrand showers since weak points in a given assembly can be investigated. Such studies will lead to determining the necessary configuration of building component mock-ups that can be used in standard laboratory test methods. As wind is required to transport firebrand showers observed in large outdoor fires, and plays a major role in whether ignition is observed, full-scale experiments must be able to consider the influence of an applied wind field to understand such ignition vulnerabilities. The basis of this paper is to present a comparison of ignition results from full-scale roofing assembly experiments, to mockups using the recently developed experimental capability at National Research Institute of Fire and Disaster (NRIFD). There are no test standards for fencing assemblies presently, another vulnerable building component to firebrand showers. The paper closes with a discussion on the efficacy of the NRIFD facility to investigate the ability of firebrand showers to ignite mockup sections of fencing assemblies, and then observe the flame spread along the ignited assembly. The experimental findings presented in this pap
Proceedings Title
12 International Association for Fire Safety Science (IAFSS) Symposium
Conference Dates
June 12-16, 2017
Conference Location
Lund, -1

Keywords

Firebrands, WUI Fires
Created June 12, 2017, Updated November 10, 2018