Author: Palmer, Angus
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Tests were carried out to investigate fire spread in an office occupancy from the room of origin to the floor above via the curtain wall. Behaviour of each individual component of the facade ie. the framing, structural fixing, glazing and spandrel panels was examined in response to repeatable timber crib fires. Additionally the reaction of the total system to a real fire load was considered. The results show limits of exposure of each individual element and suggest that additional attention is needed to the detailing of fire-stopping and choice of material for brackets. The glazing itself is a weak point with fire resisting glazing an alternative. Where possible, spandrel panels should not be glazed. Control of the hazard by fitting of suppression systems is the only alternative to spending money to limit spread. B. Morris, MEng, PhD Risk Engineer, XL Insurance Global Risks, London Office, UK L. A. Jackman, BSc, PhD Senior Consultant, Building Research Establishment, Garston, UK
Winterton House is a 25-storey steel frame building in the East End of London that was reclad with a novel form of vertically restrained, off-the-frame brickwork during the mid-1990s. An analysis of the data obtained from instrumentation installed on the building showed that, in any month, its height varied by between 5mm and 15mm in response to short-term changes in temperature. Although clay masonry is considered to undergo long-term moisture expansion, it was found that the overall height of the building decreased by approximately 10mm over the 3-year monitoring period and, as a consequence, the stress in the restrained brickwork reduced. Modelling of the short-term and time-dependent behaviour of the building suggested that lower values for the creep and irreversible moisture movement characteristics of the clay brickwork were more appropriate than the recommended design values. Details are also given of the brickwork P. R. Bingel, BSc, MSc, PhD, CEng, MICE, FBMS School of the Built Environment, Leeds Metropolitan University A. Bown, BEng, MPhil School of the Built Environment, Leeds Metropolitan University J. J. Brook, BSc, PhD, CEng MIMechE, FBMS School of Civil Engineering, University of Leeds