Fire design for steel constructions
How can unprotected steel structures be optimized in the event of a fire?
Unprotected steel structures can achieve a sufficient fire rating using a so-called fire design. This is especially true for low to medium fire loads. In this way, the client saves considerable costs for fire protection (e.g. intumescent coating) as well as any maintenance costs that may arise later. Even the initial coating costs for a steel hall can be in the range of the pure material costs for the steel structure and thus cost tens of thousands of Euros.
In the fire design, I can dimension different members, such as steel columns, steel beams (also trusses) and steel frames (see figure below) that are exposed to fire. Instead of applying the ISO standard fire, it is usually more economical to determine the actual fire load and the associated fire room curve (the so-called natural fire curves) in the sense of a fire simulation.
In Germany, this is for example for steel halls with a floor area of more than 1600 m² interesting as otherwise fire protection are required for these according to the industrial building guidelines. Without a fire design, reinforced concrete or precast solutions are often used instead as longer fire resistance times can be achieved without further measures.
A fire resistance rating of R30 or higher is also often required for steel halls with special purposes, such as meeting places. Here I can also check whether more economical solutions are possible using sophisticated fire engineering methods.
There are other cases in which it is worth investigating steel columns more closely as a classification R30 may be possible:
- Partial fire exposure, e.g. because the column is placed on a wall or it is integrated in a wall;
- columns with a low load utilization (e.g. columns in arcades);
- columns out of stainless steel (see also research results: stainless steel in fire);
- galvanized steel (see also research results: fire protection by considering the positive effects of galvanizing).
How I can help you.
I offer you a short-term fire design. The documentation contains the essential information on the heating of the cross-section, its fire rating as well as the resulting deformations. Further services can of course be provided in consultation with you.
What are your advantages?
The fire design often saves the building owner costs. In the case of new buildings, slimmer and thus more economical constructions can be implemented. In existing buildings, extensive retrofitting measures can often be avoided by considering fire design.
My initial consultation for your project.
The best way to clarify your specific task is to give me a call. Or you can send me an e-mail with a few key data. On this basis, we can discuss the general conditions and make you an attractive offer.