BRE large compartment fire tests – characterising post-flashover fires for model validation
Torero, Jose L
Reliable and comprehensive measurement data from large-scale fire tests is needed for validation of computer fire models, but is subject to various uncertainties, including radiation errors in temperature measurement. Here, a simple method for post-processing thermocouple data is demonstrated, within the scope of a series of large-scale fire tests, in order to establish a well characterised dataset of physical parameter values which can be used with confidence in model validation. Sensitivity analyses reveal the relationship of the correction uncertainty to the assumed optical properties and the thermocouple distribution. The analysis also facilitates the generation of maps of an equivalent radiative flux within the fire compartment, a quantity which usefully characterises the thermal exposures of structural components. Large spatial and temporal variations are found, with regions of most severe exposures not being collocated with the peak gas temperatures; this picture is at variance with the assumption of uniform heating conditions often adopted for post-flashover fires.