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Member Only Innovation Webinars
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member only Webinars

A Member Only Benefit

The member only webinars with Professional Development Hours (PDH) credits: an exclusive series of online technical webinars focused on helping SFPE members strengthen professional skills and stay on top of industry trends. Professional expert speakers will lead the webinars, highlighting top technical content that is essential for keeping your skills up to par.

Earn Continuing Education 

Professional Development Hours (PDHs) are only granted to individuals who attend the live webinar and are logged in for 50 minutes longer.

 

Archived Webinars

Recordings of previous webinars are available to members here.

 

Schedule  

 

Monday, December 19, 2016 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

Understanding Wall and Corner Effects Using the Fire Dynamics Simulator

Presented by Francisco Joglar, Ph.D., P.E., Senior Consultant, Jensen Hughes and Justin Williamson, Ph.D., Fire Protection Engineer, Jensen Hughes

Fires that are located near a wall boundary or near a corner may experience a reduced air entrainment and a force imbalance on the plume that tends to push the flames against the boundary and increase plume temperatures.

In practice, a fire location factor is used when a fire is considered to be influenced by a wall or a corner boundary to account for such effects in the resulting temperatures. However, limited and/or conflicting guidance is currently available on when and how to apply such factors. Two specific clarifications are necessary for plume temperature exposure analysis: 1) When to use the fire location factor, and 2) What value of the location factor to use.

The first clarification refers to how far the fire needs to be from the wall surfaces for the location factor to be applicable. The second clarification refers to the numerical value assigned to the fire location factor. The research and guidance described in this report is intended to clarify the question of when to apply locations factors and what value to use when determining fire plume temperatures. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, January 30, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

The New Standard of Care for Structural Fire Protection Analyses

PRESENTED BY Kevin LaMalva, P.E., Senior Staff II – Fire Safety, Simpson Gumpertz & Heger

The next edition of the ASCE/SEI 7 standard (Minimum Design Loads and Associated Criteria for Buildings and Other Structures) commences a new industry-consensus standard of care for structural fire protection. The default option is for the designer to strictly follow the long-standing fire resistance provisions in the applicable building code. This approach is termed standard fire resistance design, and is based on an empirical indexing system that excludes consideration of realistic thermal demands and structural system response.

As an alternative, the designer may adopt a structural fire engineering approach as constituted in the new ASCE/SEI 7-16 Appendix E (Performance-Based Design Procedures for Fire Effects on Structures). Structural fire engineering explicitly evaluates the demand and capacity of structural systems under fire loading in a similar manner as other design loads are treated in structural engineering practice.

Until now, there has been significant inconsistency in the industry when deviations from standard code provisions are sought. For instance, there may be justification for the removal of protective insulation from steel structures based solely on temperature field information. ASCE/SEI 7-16 prohibits this practice, obligating the designer to analyze the structural response due to the thermal demand without exception. Furthermore, the selective adoption of provisions from both standard fire resistance design and structural fire engineering for a given building project is prohibited. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, February 27, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

Population Characteristics that Influence Movement Speeds

PRESENTED BY Bryan L. Hoskins, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Oklahoma State University

Egress system design is typically based on average movement speeds or a distribution of speeds. Even with a distribution, each individual is assumed to be moving with little consideration of how slower moving people alter the overall evacuation. Human behavior during an evacuation is more complex than this assumption and people will take into account the impact of slower moving people on the overall evacuation. This presentation will focus on characteristics that lead to slower movement speeds of individuals and how the inclusion of them in egress simulations alters the results of the simulation. This will also include a sensitivity analysis of the model. Finally, the model will be used to show how evacuation elevators may alter the overall evacuation times from buildings. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, March 6, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

Fires in the Middle East: Challenges and Opportunities

presented by John Woycheese, P.E., Ph.D., Fire Protection Engineer, Saudi Aramco

The Middle East has experienced several significant fires in the past two years that have demonstrated a need for improved interactions between engineers, building owners and developers, and AHJs. A brief review of full-façade fires will lead into a discussion of the implications of various challenges, from questions of how to provide sufficient water to assessing equivalency of locally available products to determining methods to address concerns about existing code-deficient installations. Although some issues are specific to construction in the Middle East -- and indicate a need for more fire protection engineers in the region -- the broad implications apply to many developing areas. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, April 24, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

Wildland Urban Interface Fires – Emerging Challenges for FPEs

presented by Nelson Bryner, Leader – Wildland Urban Interface Fire Group, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Over 46 million homes in 70,000 communities are at risk of wildland-urban interface (WUI) fires, which has destroyed an average of 3000 structures annually over the last decade and is rapidly growing. Within the last 100 years in the U.S., six of the top 10 most damaging single fire events involving structures were WUI fires. In 2003, southern California fires destroyed over 3600 homes in 2003, and in 2007 southern California fires destroyed an additional 2200 homes, displaced residents of over 300,000 homes, and resulted in over $1.8 B in insured losses. In 2012-2013 over 1000 homes were destroyed from three fires in Colorado. Annual costs for WUI fires are estimated at over $14B (2009). Emerging challenges for engineers include 1) lack of fire loss data specific to WUI, 2) a limited ability to identify the vulnerabilities of structures and communities to WUI fire, 3) uncharacterized exposure to firebrands, 4) limited science to understand interaction of fire, weather, and terrain, and 5) fire codes that do not adequately address firebrand ignition. FPEs will need to address each of these challenges in order to improve the fire resilience of communities exposed to WUI wildland fires. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, May 15, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

Marijuana Growth and Extraction Process Hazard Mitigation

presented by Brian Lukus, P.E., Fire Protection Engineer, Denver Fire Department

This presentation will provide an eye-opening glimpse into the world of the commercial marijuana process industry by discussing the (fire & life safety) hazards associated with growing and extraction of marijuana. As marijuana becomes decriminalized across the United States, the demand for marijuana and marijuana oil concentrate is ever increasing and subsequently so are the hazards. An overview of the growing process will be presented including CO2 enrichment systems, construction, fumigation, and fire suppression. Each different extraction process will be discussed including liquefied petroleum gas extractions, Super/Subcritical CO2 extractions, and flammable liquid extractions as well as ‘post oil processing’ which is the processing of oil concentrate using hazardous materials after the extraction for dewaxing or winterizing the oil. Because there is little to no literature or direct prescriptive code regulations for the growing or extraction processes used in this industry, it is important for design professionals and authorities having jurisdiction to understand the process hazards so appropriate safeguards can be provided. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, June 26, 2017 Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

Performance-Based Designs Revisited: Updating Previously Completed Fire and Egress Models for Building Alterations and Additions

presented by Chris Campbell, P.E., Fire Engineer, Arup

As use of performance based design (PBD) in fire protection continues to grow in the United States, situations arise in which previously completed performance based designs must be revisited to address building alterations or additions. Many popular fire and egress modeling programs used in PBDs allow completed models to be edited months or years after completion; however, the process of making changes within these models to revise a performance based design can often be more challenging than the original design itself. In this presentation, a general process for updating existing fire and egress models is presented. Guidelines on how fire protection engineers can incorporate industry accepted processes for completing original PBDs (such as the SFPE Engineering Guide to Performance-Based Fire Protection) into updates and revisions of such designs are explored. A case study of a recently updated performance based design including fire and egress modelling is presented, along with lessons learned from the process. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, July 17, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

Analysis of Wind in an FDS Simulation

PRESENTED BY David Stacy, Associate, JENSEN HUGHES

This presentation will examine the importance of appropriately characterizing and modeling the application of wind in a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model, specifically through the use of a FDS model utilized in the design of a smoke control system. Section 909.4 of the IBC requires the design team to account for the effects of wind as part of the rational analysis. Currently, there is no set standard or “best practice” of how to appropriately model wind in a FDS simulation, or which modeling approach provides the most representative results for the purpose of a smoke control analysis. Participants in this presentation will obtain knowledge on several methods of how to determine, characterize, and appropriately model wind as part of a fire modeling analysis. Key components which will be analyzed include domain range, mesh size, and several methods of characterizing the wind in an input file. The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, August 28, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

Simulating Hospital Evacuation

PRESENTED BY Aoife Hunt, Ph.D., BSc (Hons), FHEA, MLMS, Consultant, Urban Space, Transportation, AECOM

Evacuation of those with severe movement impairments can be highly problematic in hospitals – for the patients, for the staff and for the other evacuees. It is critical to understand the performance of horizontal and vertical evacuation strategies, including the means by which people with reduced mobility (PRM) can be assisted in stair descent. This presentation describes work undertaken to quantify the performance of trained hospital staff in evacuating PRM and specifies algorithms to explicitly represent the dynamics of these devices within evacuation models. Data are presented from 32 trials where test subjects were evacuated through 11 floors of Ghent University Hospital using four commonly used movement assistance devices: stretcher, carry chair, evacuation chair and rescue sheet. The performance results form the basis of integrating movement devices into the buildingEXODUS model to calculate the movement of devices along corridors, through doorways and in stairway descent. These developments address the key evacuation components of repeated patient collection, and have numerous applications, both in simulating hospital evacuation and in representing evacuation of other premises that include PRM. This new functionality can be used to significantly enhance planning and diagnostic capabilities related to the evacuation of hospital and other healthcare facilities.The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, October 30, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-04:00 GMT)

SFPE Performance-Based Design: Underground Car Park

PRESENTED BY Kristin Steranka, Fire Protection Engineer, Koffel Associates and Lauren Schrumpf, EIT, Fire Protection Engineer, Koffel Associates

The Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) provided three case study specifications from which teams around the world could choose to prepare a performance-based fire safety strategy. Each case study specified performance objectives, a basic building description, floor plans, and minimum project requirements. Koffel Associates, Inc. chose to prepare Case Study 1-Underground Car Park and made additional assumptions to complete the performance-based design analysis.

The study was completed in accordance with the International Code Council Performance Code for Buildings and Facilities, 2015 Edition. The Society of Fire Protection Engineers: Engineering Guide to Performance-Based Fire Protection, 2007 Edition served as a template for the design and reporting of the project. Two design fires were developed and analyzed using Fire Dynamic Simulator and egress calculations to determine if life safety was preserved. For each design fire, two trial fire safety designs were evaluated: with automatic sprinkler protection and without automatic sprinkler protection. A prescriptive code deficiency required the use of this analysis to ensure that adequate egress time was provided to occupants within the garage. The performance-based design developed an adequate level of life safety deemed acceptable by the stakeholders without imposing unnecessary constrains on other aspects of the building design.The link to register is in the Member Resources section.

 

Monday, November 27, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

A Study of Reproducibility of a Full-Scale Multi-Room Compartment Fire Experiment

PRESENTED BY Nils Johansson, Ph.D., Associate Senior Lecturer, Lund University

A study of 45 full-scale compartment fire tests will be presented. All tests were conducted in the same experimental setup but with four different ventilation scenarios. The experimental setup consisted of a three-room compartment connected to a stairway. The tests were conducted during a six-year period under slightly different ambient conditions. The purpose of the study was to quantify the reproducibility of these tests with the aim to illustrate the degree of variability that can be expected in this type of experiment and how the variability is affected by different ventilation scenarios.

The 95% confidence interval of the measured temperature rise in the tests covered ±7-35% around the mean, depending on place of measurement and studied scenario. The variation in the results is due to both the variation of different weather conditions and other unknown parameters. It has not been possible to statistically distinguish between these two sources of variation in this work. The variation gives an estimate of the random error that can be expected in this type of experiment, which is something that is considered important for fire engineers to keep in mind when analyzing or referring to fire tests. The link for members to register will be available in the Member Resources section after November 28, 2016.

 

Monday, December 18, 2017 11:00 am Eastern Time (-05:00 GMT)

Modeling Gas Release from Lithium-Ion Batteries during Thermal Runaway Using FDS

PRESENTED BY Gerard Back (Jerry), CFEI, CVFI, Senior Fire Protection Engineer, Jensen Hughes

The results of an extensive full-scale lithium-ion battery thermal runaway tests series was used to generate input data for the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) model, and to calibrate and verify the accuracy of the model predictions. The FDS model was found to be able to accurately predict the internal temperature rise as well as the external skin temperature of the Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) caused by the hot gas released during a thermal runaway reaction. Additionally, the FDS model predicted that the adjacent battery modules inside the UUV would not reach thermal runaway, agreeing with the test results.

Using the predictive abilities of the FDS model, additional battery configurations were evaluated to determine the level of fire hazard. Due to the high cost of the batteries and the UUV hardware it was not possible to perform these tests at full scale, but the FDS model simulations provide insight into the extent of the thermal runaway reactions in larger battery configurations. FDS was also used to assess the effectiveness and optimize the design of different ventilation system configurations installed in the UUV storage/shipping container.The link for members to register will be available in the Member Resources section after December 18, 2016.

 

How to Register

Members can register two ways, look for your member only email to sign up or you sign up through the member resources area here.  We look forward to your participation! Be a top professional– innovate and learn with SFPE.

THE LAC MÉGANTIC INCIDENT – A WORST CASE SCENARIO


January 25, 2016 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Eastern Time

Presented by J. Gordon Routley, Eng., FSFPE, FIFireE, Division Chief, Montreal Fire Department

 

Shortly after midnight on July 6, 2013 a runaway freight train consisting of 72 tank cars of Bakken crude oil derailed in the heart of the town of Lac Mégantic Québec.  The downtown area was immediately engulfed in a massive fire that claimed the lives of 47 people who had no opportunity to escape.

 

This presentation tells the story of the incident, with a focus on the risk factors associated with the surface transportation of large quantities of highly flammable liquids, the chain of circumstances that produced an almost unpredictable event, the magnitude of the situation and its consequences.  The objective is to make participants aware of the problem in all of its dimensions.

 

Measures to address the risk factors associated with rail transportation of crude oil are a topic of public concern and specific interest to fire protection engineers.  This presentation will provide the opportunity to gain a professional perspective on the key aspects of the issue.

 

The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

THE LAC MÉGANTIC INCIDENT – A WORST CASE SCENARIO


January 25, 2016 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Eastern Time

Presented by J. Gordon Routley, Eng., FSFPE, FIFireE, Division Chief, Montreal Fire Department

 

Shortly after midnight on July 6, 2013 a runaway freight train consisting of 72 tank cars of Bakken crude oil derailed in the heart of the town of Lac Mégantic Québec.  The downtown area was immediately engulfed in a massive fire that claimed the lives of 47 people who had no opportunity to escape.

 

This presentation tells the story of the incident, with a focus on the risk factors associated with the surface transportation of large quantities of highly flammable liquids, the chain of circumstances that produced an almost unpredictable event, the magnitude of the situation and its consequences.  The objective is to make participants aware of the problem in all of its dimensions.

 

Measures to address the risk factors associated with rail transportation of crude oil are a topic of public concern and specific interest to fire protection engineers.  This presentation will provide the opportunity to gain a professional perspective on the key aspects of the issue.

 

The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.

The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.
The link to register is available in the Member Resources section.
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