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Standards Making Committee on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures


To develop a standard on methods that determine the fire exposure to a structure as part of a performance-based design for structural fire resistance.

Current Activity

SFPE Standard S.01 Committee Completes Report on a Proposed Framework for a Reliability-Based Method to Calculate Structural Design Fires

The SFPE Working Group on Risk-Informed Fire Exposures that is part of the SFPE S.01 Standards-Making Committee on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures has completed a report that outlines a proposed framework for a reliability-based method to calculate structural design fires. The report can be found here.

The SFPE Committee on Fire Exposures to structures is revising the existing SFPE Standard (S.01) on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures. This standard provides methodologies to predict thermal boundary conditions for fully- developed fires to a structure over time. Information developed using this standard will provide input to thermal response and structural response calculations undertaken as part of an engineered structural fire resistance design.

As part of this process of revising this document, the Committee is seeking to develop a reliability-based design option for ventilation-controlled enclosure-type fire exposures within the next edition of the SFPE S.01 standard.  This will involve developing guidance for fire exposure parameters that lack a reliability-based precedence. Nonetheless, a review of existing reliability-based design methods in structural/fire engineering shall inform the development of such guidance.

The scope of work outlined in this paper excludes derivation of design fuel loads and heat transfer calculations, which are addressed in related industry guidelines. Also, the scope of work does not pertain to localized or traveling fires. Other working groups that are part of this Committee are working on guidance related to localized and traveling fires.

The Committee is seeking input on the proposed framework outlined in this report. If you would like to comment on this report, send your input to

The committee is currently in the process of drafting the 2nd edition of the SFPE Standard on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures (SFPE S.01). To complete this task, the committee has three working groups that are focusing on:

Updating the Existing Database: To determine the methodology in the current S.01 standard, several predictive methods were compared to test data from a database of fire tests results. A working group that is drafting the 2nd edition has reviewed the existing database of test results to identify any tests that should be removed from the database based upon data quality. The working group has already collected data from about 25 new tests and many of these tests reference multiple datasets.

Risk: This working group is in the process of identifying how the standard should represent uncertainties in predictions to best integrate with other standards to form a probabilistic, risk-based structural fire engineering methodology. It is intended that this risk-informed approach will focus on estimating maximum temperatures, fire duration, decay period and extent of the fire exposure.

Local Fire Exposure: The working group is currently considering expanding how local fire exposures are estimated to include a wider range of conditions. Specifically, the working group is working on a methodology to determine how ‘thermal exposure’ should be expressed in the standard.

Meeting Reports from Previous Committee Meetings

Completed Products

SFPE Engineering Standard on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures (SFPE S.01 2011). Available in the SFPE online store.

Errata to the SFPE Engineering Standard on Calculating Fire Exposures to Structures [PDF]

Evaluation of Enclosure Temperature Empirical Models [PDF]

Committee Members

Interest Represented
Craig Beyler (chair)
Specialist USA
Frarid Alfawakhiri
AISI Producer USA
Vyto Babrauskas
Fire Science & Technology
Specialist USA
Jonathan R. Barnett
Basic Expert Pty Ltd
Design Engineer
Charles Fleischmann
University of Canterbury
Specialist New Zealand
Jeff Halpert
Glendale Fire Department
 Enforcement Official
Mohammad Heidari
Craig Hofmeister
The Fire Consultants
Design Engineer
Venkatesh Kodur
Michigan State
Research & Testing
Kevin LaMalva
Design Engineer
Barbara Lane
ARUP Design Engineer
Hossein Mostafaei FM Global  Insurance USA
Jason Smart
American Wood Council
William Bernie Till
AECOM Facility Owner
Ulf Wickström
Luleå University Research & Testing
Jonathan Weigand
NIST Research & Testing
Hosam Ali
FM Global
Alternate to Hossein Mostafaei  USA
Sean Hunt
Alternate to Craig Beyler
Panos Kostsvinos
Alternate to Barbara Lane
Ineke Van Zeeland
Canadian Wood Council
Alternate to Jason Smart
 Colleen Wade
BRANZ Alternate to Charles Fleischmann
New Zealand 


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