Fire safety engineering

Ingénierie de la sécurité contre l'incendie

Požarno inženirstvo - 4. del: Začetek in razvoj požara in dimnih plinov

General Information

Status
Withdrawn
Publication Date
29-Sep-1999
Withdrawal Date
29-Sep-1999
Current Stage
6060 - International Standard published
Start Date
27-Jul-1999
Completion Date
30-Sep-1999

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SLOVENSKI STANDARD
SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
01-februar-2001
3RåDUQRLQåHQLUVWYRGHO=DþHWHNLQUD]YRMSRåDUDLQGLPQLKSOLQRY

Fire safety engineering -- Part 4: Initiation and development of fire and generation of fire

effluents

Ingénierie de la sécurité contre l'incendie -- Partie 4: Amorçage et développement des

feux et production des effluents du feu
Ta slovenski standard je istoveten z: ISO/TR 13387-4:1999
ICS:
13.220.01 Varstvo pred požarom na Protection against fire in
splošno general
SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001 en

2003-01.Slovenski inštitut za standardizacijo. Razmnoževanje celote ali delov tega standarda ni dovoljeno.

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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
TECHNICAL ISO/TR
REPORT 13387-4
First edition
1999-10-15
Fire safety engineering —
Part 4:
Initiation and development of fire and
generation of fire effluents
Ingénierie de la sécurité contre l'incendie —
Partie 4: Amorçage et développement des feux et production des effluents
du feu
Reference number
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
---------------------- Page: 3 ----------------------
SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Contents

1 Scope ........................................................................................................................................................................1

2 Normative references ..............................................................................................................................................1

3 Terms and definitions .............................................................................................................................................2

4 Symbols and abbreviated terms ............................................................................................................................3

5 Subsystem 1 of the total design system ...............................................................................................................5

6 Subsystem 1 evaluations........................................................................................................................................5

6.1 General...................................................................................................................................................................5

6.2 Initiation of fire......................................................................................................................................................6

6.3 Fire development ................................................................................................................................................13

6.4 Smoke production ..............................................................................................................................................20

6.5 Species generation.............................................................................................................................................23

7 Engineering methods ............................................................................................................................................27

7.1 General.................................................................................................................................................................27

7.2 Estimation formulae ...........................................................................................................................................28

7.3 Computer models ...............................................................................................................................................28

7.4 Experimental methods .......................................................................................................................................29

(informative)

Annex A Smoke measurement units ................................................................................................31

Bibliography..............................................................................................................................................................33

© ISO 1999

All rights reserved. Unless otherwise specified, no part of this publication may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic

or mechanical, including photocopying and microfilm, without permission in writing from the publisher.

International Organization for Standardization
Case postale 56 • CH-1211 Genève 20 • Switzerland
Internet iso@iso.ch
Printed in Switzerland
---------------------- Page: 4 ----------------------
SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Foreword

ISO (the International Organization for Standardization) is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies (ISO

member bodies). The work of preparing International Standards is normally carried out through ISO technical

committees. Each member body interested in a subject for which a technical committee has been established has

the right to be represented on that committee. International organizations, governmental and non-governmental, in

liaison with ISO, also take part in the work. ISO collaborates closely with the International Electrotechnical

Commission (IEC) on all matters of electrotechnical standardization.

The main task of ISO technical committees is to prepare International Standards, but in exceptional circumstances a

technical committee may propose the publication of a Technical Report of one of the following types:

 type 1, when the required support cannot be obtained for the publication of an International Standard, despite

repeated efforts;

 type 2, when the subject is still under technical development or where for any other reason there is the future

but not immediate possibility of an agreement on an International Standard;

 type 3, when a technical committee has collected data of a different kind from that which is normally published

as an International Standard (“state of the art“, for example).

Technical Reports of types 1 and 2 are subject to review within three years of publication, to decide whether they

can be transformed into International Standards. Technical Reports of type 3 do not necessarily have to be

reviewed until the data they provide are considered to be no longer valid or useful.

ISO/TR 13387-4, which is a Technical Report of type 2, was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 92, Fire

safety, Subcommittee SC 4, Fire safety engineering.

It is one of eight parts which outlines important aspects which need to be considered in making a fundamental

approach to the provision of fire safety in buildings. The approach ignores any constraints which might apply as a

consequence of regulations or codes; following the approach will not, therefore, necessarily mean compliance with

national regulations.

ISO/TR 13387 consists of the following parts, under the general title Fire safety engineering:

 Part 1: Application of fire performance concepts to design objectives
 Part 2: Design fire scenarios and design fires
 Part 3: Assessment and verification of mathematical fire models
 Part 4: Initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluents
 Part 5: Movement of fire effluents
 Part 6: Structural response and fire spread beyond the enclosure of origin
 Part 7: Detection, activation and suppression
 Part 8: Life safety — Occupant behaviour, location and condition
Annex A of this part of ISO/TR 13387 is for information only.
iii
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Introduction

Evaluation of the initiation and development of fire and the generation of smoke and toxic species is an essential

step in the fire safety design of buildings, processes, etc. These phenomena have been actively studied especially

during the last twenty years. Calculation methods and computer codes have been developed to make the

necessary evaluations. At the same time, advances in experimental techniques have made it possible to produce

input data for the calculation methods and to run large-scale tests for assessing the validity and limitations of the

models.

In most of the existing fire safety regulations, measures are taken to prevent the ignition of a fire by controlling the

use of materials and by controlling the amount and location of possible ignition sources. It is not, however, possible

to prevent all ignitions, and therefore measures are taken to control the fire development and the generation of

smoke and toxic species. In most of the existing building regulations, ignitability, flame spread, burning rate, smoke

production and toxic-species production are controlled by what are known as reaction-to-fire and flammability

classifications. These are to a great extent empirical and based on product performance in a specific small-scale

test. Similar regulations have been set on building contents, e.g. upholstered furniture, stored goods, etc., in some

countries.

A more modern approach for prescriptive regulations is to establish the classification scheme based on small-scale

tests in such a fashion that relative performance in one or more full-scale fire scenarios is replicated. If the

scenarios are sufficiently representative of real fire scenarios, the classification system becomes more reliable than

those based on performance in small-scale tests alone.

In this document, the initiation and development of fire and the generation of hazardous species is considered as

part of a global fire safety evaluation system. This part of ISO/TR 13387 is intended for use together with the other

parts as described in clause 6. For some applications, this part alone may be sufficient.

Clause 6 of this part of ISO/TR 13387 describes and provides guidance on the methods available to describe the

physical and chemical processes involved in:
 initiation of fire;
 fire development;
 smoke generation;
 toxic-species generation.

Clause 7 is a discussion of the engineering methods available to evaluate the initiation and development of fire and

the generation of smoke and gaseous species.

Quantitative information may be related to specific test conditions and/or specific commercial products, and thus the

application of data under different conditions may result in significant errors.
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
TECHNICAL REPORT © ISO ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Fire safety engineering —
Part 4:
Initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluents
1 Scope

This part of ISO/TR 13387 is intended to provide guidance to designers, regulators and fire safety professionals on

the use of engineering methods for the prediction of the initiation of fire, the generation of fire effluents and the

development of fire inside the room of origin. It is not intended as a detailed design guide, but could be used as the

basis for the development of such a guide.

This part of ISO/TR 13387 provides a framework for critically reviewing the suitability of an engineering method for

assessing the potential for the initiation and development of fire and the generation of fire effluents. It also provides

guidance on the means to assess the effectiveness of fire safety measures meant to reduce the probability of

ignition, to control fire development and to reduce the accumulation of heat, smoke and toxic products or products

causing non-thermal damage. The methods for calculating the effects of design fires for use in the design and

assessment of fire safety of a building are also addressed.
2 Normative references

The following normative documents contain provisions which, through reference in this text, constitute provisions of

this part of ISO/TR 13387. For dated references, subsequent amendments to, or revisions of, any of these

publications do not apply. However, parties to agreements based on this part of ISO/TR 13387 are encouraged to

investigate the possibility of applying the most recent additions of the normative documents indicated below. For

undated references, the latest addition of the normative document referred to applies. Members of ISO and IEC

maintain registers of currently valid international standards.
ISO 31-0:1992, Quantities and units — Part 0: General principles.

ISO 1000:1992, SI units and recommendations for the use of their multiples and certain other units.

ISO 5660-1:1993, Fire tests — Reaction to fire — Part 1: Rate of heat release from building products — (Cone

calorimeter method).
ISO 7345:1987, Thermal insulation — Physical quantities and definitions.
ISO 9705:1993, Fire tests — Full-scale room test for surface products.

ISO/TR 11696-1, Use of reaction to fire tests — Part 1: Application of results to predict fire performance of building

products by mathematical modelling.

ISO/TR 13387-1, Fire safety engineering — Part 1: Application of fire performance concepts to design objectives.

ISO/TR 13387-2, Fire safety engineering — Part 2: Design fire scenarios and design fires.

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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)

ISO/TR 13387-3, Fire safety engineering — Part 3: Assessment and verification of mathematical fire models.

ISO/TR 13387-5, Fire safety engineering — Part 5: Movement of fire effluents.

ISO/TR 13387-6, Fire safety engineering — Part 6: Structural response and fire spread beyond the enclosure of

origin.

ISO/TR 13387-7, Fire safety engineering — Part 7: Detection, activation and suppression.

ISO/TR 13387-8, Fire safety engineering — Part 8: Life safety — Occupant behaviour, location and condition.

ISO 13571, Fire hazard analysis — Life-threatening components of fire.
ISO 13943, Fire safety — Vocabulary.
3 Terms and definitions

For the purposes of this part of ISO/TR 13387, the terms and definitions given in ISO 13943 and ISO/TR 13387-1

and the following apply.
3.1
emissivity

the ratio of the power per unit area radiated from a surface to that radiated from a black body at the same

temperature
3.2
extinction coefficient

a constant determining the decay of the light intensity in smoke per unit path length, given by K = (1/l) ln (I /I)

It is expressed in m .
3.3
fire exposure

a process by which, or the extent to which, humans, animals, materials, products or assemblies are subjected to the

conditions created by a fire
3.4
heat flux

the rate at which heat crosses a surface per unit area of surface, expressed in W/m

In ISO 1000 and ISO 31-0, this is referred to as "density of heat flow rate".
3.5
heat of combustion

the energy which unit mass of material or product is capable of releasing by complete combustion, expressed in

J/kg
3.6
heat of gasification

the quantity of energy required to change a unit mass of material from condensed phase to vapour without change

of temperature, expressed in J/kg
3.7
ignition temperature

the minimum temperature measured on a material at which sustained combustion can be initiated under specific

test conditions, expressed in K
3.8
opening factor
1/2
A (h ) /A
v v T
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© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
1/2
It is expressed in m .
For the meanings of the symbols, see clause 4.
3.9
pyrolysis
a process of simultaneous phase and chemical-species change caused by heat
3.10
smoke point

minimum height of a laminar axisymmetric diffusion flame (fuel volumetric mass loss rate) at which smoke escapes

from the tip of a flame, expressed in m
3.11
specific heat capacity
heat capacity divided by mass, expressed in J/(kg×K)
3.12
thermal conductivity
ratio of heat flux to temperature gradient, defined by the relation -·qk= ∇ T
It is expressed in W/(m×K).
3.13
thermal diffusivity

thermal conductivity divided by the density and the specific heat capacity, given by k = k/rc

It is expressed in m /s.
3.14
thermal inertia

the product of the thermal conductivity, the density and the specific heat capacity, given by

krc
2 4 2

It is equal to the square of thermal effusivity as defined in ISO 7345. It is expressed in J /(m ×K ×s).

3.15
total cross-sectional area of smoke

the average cross-sectional area of smoke particles perpendicular to the light path multiplied by the number of

smoke particles, expressed in m
3.16
ventilation factor
1/2
A (h )
v v
5/2
It is expressed in m .
For the meanings of the symbols, see clause 4.
4 Symbols and abbreviated terms
A area of an opening, expressed in m
A surface area of fuel, expressed in m
fuel
A floor area, expressed in m
A total area of the bounding surfaces in an enclosure, expressed in m
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
at , expressed in W×s&Q
1/2
F opening factor, expressed in m
5/2
F ventilation factor, expressed in m
f yield of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc.
X 2
g acceleration due to gravity, expressed in m/s
h height of an opening, expressed in m
I intensity of light after passing through smoke, expressed in W/m
I intensity of light in clean air, expressed in W/m
k thermal conductivity, expressed in W/(m×K)
K extinction coefficient, expressed in m
kthermal diffusivity, expressed in W/(m×K)
l optical path length, expressed in m
L thickness of a specimen, expressed in m
m smoke density, expressed in dB/m
mass loss rate of fuel, expressed in kg/s&m
fuel
generation rate of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc., expressed in kg/s
m&X
N total number of smoke particles
n number density of smoke particles, expressed in m
ffuel to air equivalence ratio
&Q heat release rate, expressed in W

2&heat release rate at the growth time in t fires, expressed in W; usually taken as 1 MW

q heat flux (density of heat flow rate), expressed in W/m
&q external heat flux, expressed in W/m
ext
&q heat loss from the surface by convection or radiation, expressed in W/m
loss
rdensity, expressed in kg/m
seffective absorption cross-section of a smoke particle, expressed in m
T temperature, expressed in °C
T ignition temperature, expressed in °C

T the lowest temperature at which a flammable mixture at its lean limit may burn, expressed in °C

T initial surface temperature, expressed in °C
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)

T the lowest temperature at which a flammable mixture at its rich limit may burn, expressed in °C

t time, expressed in s
t growth time in a t fire, expressed in s
t time to ignition (ignition delay), expressed in s
ttime constant, expressed in s
volume flow rate, expressed in m /s&V

V volumetric production rate of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc., expressed in m /s

X 2
x flame height, expressed in m
x position of pyrolysis front, expressed in m
5 Subsystem 1 of the total design system

The approach adopted in the work of ISO/TC 92/SC 4 is to consider the global objective of fire safety design. The

global design, described in more detail in ISO/TR 13387-1, is sub-divided into what are called "subsystems" of the

total design. A key principle is that inter-relation and interdependence of the various subsystems are appreciated,

and that the consequences of all the events in any one subsystem on all other subsystems are identified and

addressed. Another key principle is that the design is time-based to reflect the fact that real fires vary in severity and

extent with time. Ignition represents zero time.

In ISO/TR 13387-1, the total fire safety design is illustrated by an information bus analogy. The information bus has

three layers: global information, evaluation information and process information. In this information bus analogy,

subsystem 1 (SS1) concerns the initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluent and is illustrated in

Figure 1. SS1 draws on other subsystems for the prescription or characterization of a fire and, in turn, provides

information for the other subsystems to employ. Definitions of terms concerning the global information bus are given

in ISO/TR 13387-1.

For example, SS1 provides the information on heat, smoke and species generation, which is then used by SS2 for

the calculation of smoke movement out of the room and in the building and by SS5 to assess evacuation and

rescue provisions. SS1 also calculates the temperature history in the enclosure of fire origin, which then is

employed by SS3 to predict the structural behaviour. The temperature and flow profiles in the room are employed

by SS4 to predict the detection of fire, as well as the activation of smoke control and suppression systems. The time

of activation of active control systems is then fed back by SS4 to SS1 for the prediction of subsequent fire

development and smoke and species generation. The initiation of a fire and its development outside the enclosure

of origin are also calculated by SS1.

The evaluations, and processes needed to do the evaluations, are discussed in detail in clause 6.

6 Subsystem 1 evaluations
6.1 General

In this clause, various fire phenomena and consequences of fire will be discussed. The required input information

and the possible output information will be identified. Areas for which shortages in engineering methods and lack of

knowledge are known to exist will be addressed. The text makes reference to existing acknowledged literature,

whenever such is available.
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
6.2 Initiation of fire
6.2.1 Evaluation of initiation of fire

In deterministic fire safety engineering design, ignition is often simply assumed to occur and no calculations on the

ignition process are performed. In other instances, especially when the combustible contents and the distribution of

ignition sources in the room of fire origin are known, performing calculations on the ignition process can provide

valuable information on the possible fire development in the room. Evaluation of ignition is needed especially when

the fire safety engineer has to evaluate whether one product can be replaced by another, all other design

parameters being fixed. Often the task is to consider if a potential ignition source is likely to cause ignition of

adjacent items, i.e. if the first item ignited will cause a second item to be ignited, and thereby the fire to spread to a

hazardous extent.
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)

Figure 1 — Illustration of the global information, evaluation and process buses for SS1

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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)

The probability of ignition is a subset of design fires which is addressed in ISO/TR 13387-2. Assessment of the

probability of ignition is needed when making decisions about the design fire scenarios and event trees used in risk

assessment. Probabilistic design and risk assessment are discussed in more detail in ISO/TR 13387-1.

This subclause discusses ignition of items which are in one way or another exposed to heating from an external

source. This source of heat can be of various intensities and shapes, varying from (say) a match flame to an

actively burning fuel package. Fire development as discussed in 6.3 can be considered to be a series of non-

simultaneous ignitions, each of which generally behaves in the theoretical manner discussed herein.

Figure 2 identifies parameters having an influence on the ignition of various kinds of fuel. A condition for ignition is

that both a flammable substance and an ignition source exist. The flammable substance may appear in a number of

different forms. The heat transfer from the ignition source to the flammable substance may also take different forms,

the processes being, in addition, sensitive to the local environment around the source and the exposed substance.

6.2.1.1 Input

The evaluation of the initiation of a fire (see Figure 1) requires as input information from the global information the

following:

 building parameters (e.g. lining materials, their thermal and chemical properties, their location with respect to

heat sources);

 fire loads (building contents, thermal and chemical properties of building contents, location with respect to heat

sources);

 fire scenarios (properties of ignition sources, their number and their locations);

 thermal profile (radiative, conductive and convective heat fluxes, gas temperature, initial fuel temperature);

 size of fire/extent of smoke (area exposed to a burning fire).

NOTE This information is also needed for evaluating the ignition of second, etc., items. Therefore, e.g. the size of

fire/extent of smoke is an input or output, depending on when it is used during an evaluation.

6.2.1.2 Output

The evaluation of the initiation of a fire (see Figure 1) provides the following information to the global information:

 fire scenarios (object first ignited, time to ignition);
 size of fire/ extent of smoke (area first ignited, size of initial flame).
6.2.2 Gas phase ignition

The process of ignition to give flames requires mixtures of gas phase combustibles at an appropriate fuel-to-air ratio

and either local temperature fields higher than the auto-ignition limit or a pilot source. The necessary conditions for

any gaseous mixture of fuel are usually expressed as ignitability regions as in Figure 3. If a fuel is not naturally in

the gas phase, energy must be applied to the substance to bring it to the gaseous state. For liquids, the amount of

energy required depends on the vaporisation rate and the way in which the liquid is distributed or the material upon

which the liquid is absorbed, i.e. bulk liquids will not ignite until the bulk temperature equals or exceeds the flash

point. If the liquid is atomised, its ignition propensity will approach the ignitability of gaseous mixtures of the same

material, depending on the degree of atomisation and the temperature of the environment. If the liquid is absorbed

in a porous medium, the energy demand for ignition will depend on how fast the porous material will absorb energy

and heat up. In this case, the thermal properties of the porous medium will dominate the process.

In the case of gaseous or liquid fuels, the engineering task is usually to consider whether a flammable mixture can

be created in the space of concern. In the case of solids, the task can usually be reduced to evaluating whether the

surface temperature will become high enough to cause ignition, and no gas phase considerations are needed as we

can see in 6.2.3.
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Figure 2 — Factors to be taken into account when assessing ignition potential
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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)

Figure 3 — Effect of temperature on the limits of flammability of a flammable vapour/air mixture at constant

[1]
initial pressure
Useful information on gas phase ignition can be found in references [1] and [2].
6.2.2.1 Input

The evaluation of gas phase ignition may require, as input, specific information on the following processes and

product properties:

 fuel properties, e.g. latent heat of gasification, flash point, flammability limits, vaporisation or pyrolysis rate at

defined temperatures and thermal-exposure histories;

 radiative, convective and conductive heat transfer to the surfaces to estimate the fuel flow rate and the thermal

conditions in the space of interest;

 fuel/air mixing, e.g. the air flow in the space to estimate the dilution of the gaseous fuel;

 properties of potential ignition sources, e.g. temperature and spark energy.

Detailed discussions of the flammability of gas mixtures and ignition of liquid fuels, as well as tabulations of fuel

[3]
properties, can be found in various publications, e.g. the SFPE Handbook .
6.2.2.2 Output

The output of the evaluation is the time to ignition or whether ignition will occur at all.

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SIST ISO/TR 13387-4:2001
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
6.2.3 Ignition model for solids

Because most accidental fires in buildings are initiated on solid materials, this subclause is restricted to surveying

the parameters that dominate the ignition of materials in the solid phase.

Heat transferred from a source to a target results in a rise in the temperature of the target. The conditions for

ignition are produced when pyrolyzates from the target mix with air to produce ignitable mixtures at temperatures

that could locally exceed spontaneous-ignition temperatures. The presence of any kind of pilot source will generally

cause ignition as soon as the fuel/air ratio permits. Factors that control this process are the mode of ignition, the

rate of heat transfer from the source, the target composition, the target location, the thermal and optical properties

of the target and the availability of air. For common ignition sources (hot object, intense electric arc, smouldering

material or flame), two types of ignition are possible: (1) glowing ignition (exothermic reaction at the surface of a

material with air) and (2) flaming ignition (ignition that occurs in the gas phase mixture of pyrolyzates and air).

Materials that ignite to glowing ignition may smoulder (combustion that occurs and propagates in the bulk material)

for some period. If conditions are appropriate, smouldering may undergo a transition to flaming ignition and rapid fire

spread. Materials that are ignited to flaming ignition may sustain the flaming mode and, if conditions are right, may

spread to a larger size. Co
...

TECHNICAL ISO/TR
REPORT 13387-4
First edition
1999-10-15
Fire safety engineering —
Part 4:
Initiation and development of fire and
generation of fire effluents
Ingénierie de la sécurité contre l'incendie —
Partie 4: Amorçage et développement des feux et production des effluents
du feu
Reference number
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
---------------------- Page: 1 ----------------------
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Contents

1 Scope ........................................................................................................................................................................1

2 Normative references ..............................................................................................................................................1

3 Terms and definitions .............................................................................................................................................2

4 Symbols and abbreviated terms ............................................................................................................................3

5 Subsystem 1 of the total design system ...............................................................................................................5

6 Subsystem 1 evaluations........................................................................................................................................5

6.1 General...................................................................................................................................................................5

6.2 Initiation of fire......................................................................................................................................................6

6.3 Fire development ................................................................................................................................................13

6.4 Smoke production ..............................................................................................................................................20

6.5 Species generation.............................................................................................................................................23

7 Engineering methods ............................................................................................................................................27

7.1 General.................................................................................................................................................................27

7.2 Estimation formulae ...........................................................................................................................................28

7.3 Computer models ...............................................................................................................................................28

7.4 Experimental methods .......................................................................................................................................29

(informative)

Annex A Smoke measurement units ................................................................................................31

Bibliography..............................................................................................................................................................33

© ISO 1999

All rights reserved. Unless otherwise specified, no part of this publication may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic

or mechanical, including photocopying and microfilm, without permission in writing from the publisher.

International Organization for Standardization
Case postale 56 • CH-1211 Genève 20 • Switzerland
Internet iso@iso.ch
Printed in Switzerland
---------------------- Page: 2 ----------------------
© ISO
ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Foreword

ISO (the International Organization for Standardization) is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies (ISO

member bodies). The work of preparing International Standards is normally carried out through ISO technical

committees. Each member body interested in a subject for which a technical committee has been established has

the right to be represented on that committee. International organizations, governmental and non-governmental, in

liaison with ISO, also take part in the work. ISO collaborates closely with the International Electrotechnical

Commission (IEC) on all matters of electrotechnical standardization.

The main task of ISO technical committees is to prepare International Standards, but in exceptional circumstances a

technical committee may propose the publication of a Technical Report of one of the following types:

 type 1, when the required support cannot be obtained for the publication of an International Standard, despite

repeated efforts;

 type 2, when the subject is still under technical development or where for any other reason there is the future

but not immediate possibility of an agreement on an International Standard;

 type 3, when a technical committee has collected data of a different kind from that which is normally published

as an International Standard (“state of the art“, for example).

Technical Reports of types 1 and 2 are subject to review within three years of publication, to decide whether they

can be transformed into International Standards. Technical Reports of type 3 do not necessarily have to be

reviewed until the data they provide are considered to be no longer valid or useful.

ISO/TR 13387-4, which is a Technical Report of type 2, was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 92, Fire

safety, Subcommittee SC 4, Fire safety engineering.

It is one of eight parts which outlines important aspects which need to be considered in making a fundamental

approach to the provision of fire safety in buildings. The approach ignores any constraints which might apply as a

consequence of regulations or codes; following the approach will not, therefore, necessarily mean compliance with

national regulations.

ISO/TR 13387 consists of the following parts, under the general title Fire safety engineering:

 Part 1: Application of fire performance concepts to design objectives
 Part 2: Design fire scenarios and design fires
 Part 3: Assessment and verification of mathematical fire models
 Part 4: Initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluents
 Part 5: Movement of fire effluents
 Part 6: Structural response and fire spread beyond the enclosure of origin
 Part 7: Detection, activation and suppression
 Part 8: Life safety — Occupant behaviour, location and condition
Annex A of this part of ISO/TR 13387 is for information only.
iii
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Introduction

Evaluation of the initiation and development of fire and the generation of smoke and toxic species is an essential

step in the fire safety design of buildings, processes, etc. These phenomena have been actively studied especially

during the last twenty years. Calculation methods and computer codes have been developed to make the

necessary evaluations. At the same time, advances in experimental techniques have made it possible to produce

input data for the calculation methods and to run large-scale tests for assessing the validity and limitations of the

models.

In most of the existing fire safety regulations, measures are taken to prevent the ignition of a fire by controlling the

use of materials and by controlling the amount and location of possible ignition sources. It is not, however, possible

to prevent all ignitions, and therefore measures are taken to control the fire development and the generation of

smoke and toxic species. In most of the existing building regulations, ignitability, flame spread, burning rate, smoke

production and toxic-species production are controlled by what are known as reaction-to-fire and flammability

classifications. These are to a great extent empirical and based on product performance in a specific small-scale

test. Similar regulations have been set on building contents, e.g. upholstered furniture, stored goods, etc., in some

countries.

A more modern approach for prescriptive regulations is to establish the classification scheme based on small-scale

tests in such a fashion that relative performance in one or more full-scale fire scenarios is replicated. If the

scenarios are sufficiently representative of real fire scenarios, the classification system becomes more reliable than

those based on performance in small-scale tests alone.

In this document, the initiation and development of fire and the generation of hazardous species is considered as

part of a global fire safety evaluation system. This part of ISO/TR 13387 is intended for use together with the other

parts as described in clause 6. For some applications, this part alone may be sufficient.

Clause 6 of this part of ISO/TR 13387 describes and provides guidance on the methods available to describe the

physical and chemical processes involved in:
 initiation of fire;
 fire development;
 smoke generation;
 toxic-species generation.

Clause 7 is a discussion of the engineering methods available to evaluate the initiation and development of fire and

the generation of smoke and gaseous species.

Quantitative information may be related to specific test conditions and/or specific commercial products, and thus the

application of data under different conditions may result in significant errors.
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TECHNICAL REPORT © ISO ISO/TR 13387-4:1999(E)
Fire safety engineering —
Part 4:
Initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluents
1 Scope

This part of ISO/TR 13387 is intended to provide guidance to designers, regulators and fire safety professionals on

the use of engineering methods for the prediction of the initiation of fire, the generation of fire effluents and the

development of fire inside the room of origin. It is not intended as a detailed design guide, but could be used as the

basis for the development of such a guide.

This part of ISO/TR 13387 provides a framework for critically reviewing the suitability of an engineering method for

assessing the potential for the initiation and development of fire and the generation of fire effluents. It also provides

guidance on the means to assess the effectiveness of fire safety measures meant to reduce the probability of

ignition, to control fire development and to reduce the accumulation of heat, smoke and toxic products or products

causing non-thermal damage. The methods for calculating the effects of design fires for use in the design and

assessment of fire safety of a building are also addressed.
2 Normative references

The following normative documents contain provisions which, through reference in this text, constitute provisions of

this part of ISO/TR 13387. For dated references, subsequent amendments to, or revisions of, any of these

publications do not apply. However, parties to agreements based on this part of ISO/TR 13387 are encouraged to

investigate the possibility of applying the most recent additions of the normative documents indicated below. For

undated references, the latest addition of the normative document referred to applies. Members of ISO and IEC

maintain registers of currently valid international standards.
ISO 31-0:1992, Quantities and units — Part 0: General principles.

ISO 1000:1992, SI units and recommendations for the use of their multiples and certain other units.

ISO 5660-1:1993, Fire tests — Reaction to fire — Part 1: Rate of heat release from building products — (Cone

calorimeter method).
ISO 7345:1987, Thermal insulation — Physical quantities and definitions.
ISO 9705:1993, Fire tests — Full-scale room test for surface products.

ISO/TR 11696-1, Use of reaction to fire tests — Part 1: Application of results to predict fire performance of building

products by mathematical modelling.

ISO/TR 13387-1, Fire safety engineering — Part 1: Application of fire performance concepts to design objectives.

ISO/TR 13387-2, Fire safety engineering — Part 2: Design fire scenarios and design fires.

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ISO/TR 13387-3, Fire safety engineering — Part 3: Assessment and verification of mathematical fire models.

ISO/TR 13387-5, Fire safety engineering — Part 5: Movement of fire effluents.

ISO/TR 13387-6, Fire safety engineering — Part 6: Structural response and fire spread beyond the enclosure of

origin.

ISO/TR 13387-7, Fire safety engineering — Part 7: Detection, activation and suppression.

ISO/TR 13387-8, Fire safety engineering — Part 8: Life safety — Occupant behaviour, location and condition.

ISO 13571, Fire hazard analysis — Life-threatening components of fire.
ISO 13943, Fire safety — Vocabulary.
3 Terms and definitions

For the purposes of this part of ISO/TR 13387, the terms and definitions given in ISO 13943 and ISO/TR 13387-1

and the following apply.
3.1
emissivity

the ratio of the power per unit area radiated from a surface to that radiated from a black body at the same

temperature
3.2
extinction coefficient

a constant determining the decay of the light intensity in smoke per unit path length, given by K = (1/l) ln (I /I)

It is expressed in m .
3.3
fire exposure

a process by which, or the extent to which, humans, animals, materials, products or assemblies are subjected to the

conditions created by a fire
3.4
heat flux

the rate at which heat crosses a surface per unit area of surface, expressed in W/m

In ISO 1000 and ISO 31-0, this is referred to as "density of heat flow rate".
3.5
heat of combustion

the energy which unit mass of material or product is capable of releasing by complete combustion, expressed in

J/kg
3.6
heat of gasification

the quantity of energy required to change a unit mass of material from condensed phase to vapour without change

of temperature, expressed in J/kg
3.7
ignition temperature

the minimum temperature measured on a material at which sustained combustion can be initiated under specific

test conditions, expressed in K
3.8
opening factor
1/2
A (h ) /A
v v T
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1/2
It is expressed in m .
For the meanings of the symbols, see clause 4.
3.9
pyrolysis
a process of simultaneous phase and chemical-species change caused by heat
3.10
smoke point

minimum height of a laminar axisymmetric diffusion flame (fuel volumetric mass loss rate) at which smoke escapes

from the tip of a flame, expressed in m
3.11
specific heat capacity
heat capacity divided by mass, expressed in J/(kg×K)
3.12
thermal conductivity
ratio of heat flux to temperature gradient, defined by the relation -·qk= ∇ T
It is expressed in W/(m×K).
3.13
thermal diffusivity

thermal conductivity divided by the density and the specific heat capacity, given by k = k/rc

It is expressed in m /s.
3.14
thermal inertia

the product of the thermal conductivity, the density and the specific heat capacity, given by

krc
2 4 2

It is equal to the square of thermal effusivity as defined in ISO 7345. It is expressed in J /(m ×K ×s).

3.15
total cross-sectional area of smoke

the average cross-sectional area of smoke particles perpendicular to the light path multiplied by the number of

smoke particles, expressed in m
3.16
ventilation factor
1/2
A (h )
v v
5/2
It is expressed in m .
For the meanings of the symbols, see clause 4.
4 Symbols and abbreviated terms
A area of an opening, expressed in m
A surface area of fuel, expressed in m
fuel
A floor area, expressed in m
A total area of the bounding surfaces in an enclosure, expressed in m
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at , expressed in W×s&Q
1/2
F opening factor, expressed in m
5/2
F ventilation factor, expressed in m
f yield of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc.
X 2
g acceleration due to gravity, expressed in m/s
h height of an opening, expressed in m
I intensity of light after passing through smoke, expressed in W/m
I intensity of light in clean air, expressed in W/m
k thermal conductivity, expressed in W/(m×K)
K extinction coefficient, expressed in m
kthermal diffusivity, expressed in W/(m×K)
l optical path length, expressed in m
L thickness of a specimen, expressed in m
m smoke density, expressed in dB/m
mass loss rate of fuel, expressed in kg/s&m
fuel
generation rate of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc., expressed in kg/s
m&X
N total number of smoke particles
n number density of smoke particles, expressed in m
ffuel to air equivalence ratio
&Q heat release rate, expressed in W

2&heat release rate at the growth time in t fires, expressed in W; usually taken as 1 MW

q heat flux (density of heat flow rate), expressed in W/m
&q external heat flux, expressed in W/m
ext
&q heat loss from the surface by convection or radiation, expressed in W/m
loss
rdensity, expressed in kg/m
seffective absorption cross-section of a smoke particle, expressed in m
T temperature, expressed in °C
T ignition temperature, expressed in °C

T the lowest temperature at which a flammable mixture at its lean limit may burn, expressed in °C

T initial surface temperature, expressed in °C
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T the lowest temperature at which a flammable mixture at its rich limit may burn, expressed in °C

t time, expressed in s
t growth time in a t fire, expressed in s
t time to ignition (ignition delay), expressed in s
ttime constant, expressed in s
volume flow rate, expressed in m /s&V

V volumetric production rate of species X, where X = CO, CO , etc., expressed in m /s

X 2
x flame height, expressed in m
x position of pyrolysis front, expressed in m
5 Subsystem 1 of the total design system

The approach adopted in the work of ISO/TC 92/SC 4 is to consider the global objective of fire safety design. The

global design, described in more detail in ISO/TR 13387-1, is sub-divided into what are called "subsystems" of the

total design. A key principle is that inter-relation and interdependence of the various subsystems are appreciated,

and that the consequences of all the events in any one subsystem on all other subsystems are identified and

addressed. Another key principle is that the design is time-based to reflect the fact that real fires vary in severity and

extent with time. Ignition represents zero time.

In ISO/TR 13387-1, the total fire safety design is illustrated by an information bus analogy. The information bus has

three layers: global information, evaluation information and process information. In this information bus analogy,

subsystem 1 (SS1) concerns the initiation and development of fire and generation of fire effluent and is illustrated in

Figure 1. SS1 draws on other subsystems for the prescription or characterization of a fire and, in turn, provides

information for the other subsystems to employ. Definitions of terms concerning the global information bus are given

in ISO/TR 13387-1.

For example, SS1 provides the information on heat, smoke and species generation, which is then used by SS2 for

the calculation of smoke movement out of the room and in the building and by SS5 to assess evacuation and

rescue provisions. SS1 also calculates the temperature history in the enclosure of fire origin, which then is

employed by SS3 to predict the structural behaviour. The temperature and flow profiles in the room are employed

by SS4 to predict the detection of fire, as well as the activation of smoke control and suppression systems. The time

of activation of active control systems is then fed back by SS4 to SS1 for the prediction of subsequent fire

development and smoke and species generation. The initiation of a fire and its development outside the enclosure

of origin are also calculated by SS1.

The evaluations, and processes needed to do the evaluations, are discussed in detail in clause 6.

6 Subsystem 1 evaluations
6.1 General

In this clause, various fire phenomena and consequences of fire will be discussed. The required input information

and the possible output information will be identified. Areas for which shortages in engineering methods and lack of

knowledge are known to exist will be addressed. The text makes reference to existing acknowledged literature,

whenever such is available.
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6.2 Initiation of fire
6.2.1 Evaluation of initiation of fire

In deterministic fire safety engineering design, ignition is often simply assumed to occur and no calculations on the

ignition process are performed. In other instances, especially when the combustible contents and the distribution of

ignition sources in the room of fire origin are known, performing calculations on the ignition process can provide

valuable information on the possible fire development in the room. Evaluation of ignition is needed especially when

the fire safety engineer has to evaluate whether one product can be replaced by another, all other design

parameters being fixed. Often the task is to consider if a potential ignition source is likely to cause ignition of

adjacent items, i.e. if the first item ignited will cause a second item to be ignited, and thereby the fire to spread to a

hazardous extent.
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Figure 1 — Illustration of the global information, evaluation and process buses for SS1

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The probability of ignition is a subset of design fires which is addressed in ISO/TR 13387-2. Assessment of the

probability of ignition is needed when making decisions about the design fire scenarios and event trees used in risk

assessment. Probabilistic design and risk assessment are discussed in more detail in ISO/TR 13387-1.

This subclause discusses ignition of items which are in one way or another exposed to heating from an external

source. This source of heat can be of various intensities and shapes, varying from (say) a match flame to an

actively burning fuel package. Fire development as discussed in 6.3 can be considered to be a series of non-

simultaneous ignitions, each of which generally behaves in the theoretical manner discussed herein.

Figure 2 identifies parameters having an influence on the ignition of various kinds of fuel. A condition for ignition is

that both a flammable substance and an ignition source exist. The flammable substance may appear in a number of

different forms. The heat transfer from the ignition source to the flammable substance may also take different forms,

the processes being, in addition, sensitive to the local environment around the source and the exposed substance.

6.2.1.1 Input

The evaluation of the initiation of a fire (see Figure 1) requires as input information from the global information the

following:

 building parameters (e.g. lining materials, their thermal and chemical properties, their location with respect to

heat sources);

 fire loads (building contents, thermal and chemical properties of building contents, location with respect to heat

sources);

 fire scenarios (properties of ignition sources, their number and their locations);

 thermal profile (radiative, conductive and convective heat fluxes, gas temperature, initial fuel temperature);

 size of fire/extent of smoke (area exposed to a burning fire).

NOTE This information is also needed for evaluating the ignition of second, etc., items. Therefore, e.g. the size of

fire/extent of smoke is an input or output, depending on when it is used during an evaluation.

6.2.1.2 Output

The evaluation of the initiation of a fire (see Figure 1) provides the following information to the global information:

 fire scenarios (object first ignited, time to ignition);
 size of fire/ extent of smoke (area first ignited, size of initial flame).
6.2.2 Gas phase ignition

The process of ignition to give flames requires mixtures of gas phase combustibles at an appropriate fuel-to-air ratio

and either local temperature fields higher than the auto-ignition limit or a pilot source. The necessary conditions for

any gaseous mixture of fuel are usually expressed as ignitability regions as in Figure 3. If a fuel is not naturally in

the gas phase, energy must be applied to the substance to bring it to the gaseous state. For liquids, the amount of

energy required depends on the vaporisation rate and the way in which the liquid is distributed or the material upon

which the liquid is absorbed, i.e. bulk liquids will not ignite until the bulk temperature equals or exceeds the flash

point. If the liquid is atomised, its ignition propensity will approach the ignitability of gaseous mixtures of the same

material, depending on the degree of atomisation and the temperature of the environment. If the liquid is absorbed

in a porous medium, the energy demand for ignition will depend on how fast the porous material will absorb energy

and heat up. In this case, the thermal properties of the porous medium will dominate the process.

In the case of gaseous or liquid fuels, the engineering task is usually to consider whether a flammable mixture can

be created in the space of concern. In the case of solids, the task can usually be reduced to evaluating whether the

surface temperature will become high enough to cause ignition, and no gas phase considerations are needed as we

can see in 6.2.3.
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Figure 2 — Factors to be taken into account when assessing ignition potential
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Figure 3 — Effect of temperature on the limits of flammability of a flammable vapour/air mixture at constant

[1]
initial pressure
Useful information on gas phase ignition can be found in references [1] and [2].
6.2.2.1 Input

The evaluation of gas phase ignition may require, as input, specific information on the following processes and

product properties:

 fuel properties, e.g. latent heat of gasification, flash point, flammability limits, vaporisation or pyrolysis rate at

defined temperatures and thermal-exposure histories;

 radiative, convective and conductive heat transfer to the surfaces to estimate the fuel flow rate and the thermal

conditions in the space of interest;

 fuel/air mixing, e.g. the air flow in the space to estimate the dilution of the gaseous fuel;

 properties of potential ignition sources, e.g. temperature and spark energy.

Detailed discussions of the flammability of gas mixtures and ignition of liquid fuels, as well as tabulations of fuel

[3]
properties, can be found in various publications, e.g. the SFPE Handbook .
6.2.2.2 Output

The output of the evaluation is the time to ignition or whether ignition will occur at all.

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6.2.3 Ignition model for solids

Because most accidental fires in buildings are initiated on solid materials, this subclause is restricted to surveying

the parameters that dominate the ignition of materials in the solid phase.

Heat transferred from a source to a target results in a rise in the temperature of the target. The conditions for

ignition are produced when pyrolyzates from the target mix with air to produce ignitable mixtures at temperatures

that could locally exceed spontaneous-ignition temperatures. The presence of any kind of pilot source will generally

cause ignition as soon as the fuel/air ratio permits. Factors that control this process are the mode of ignition, the

rate of heat transfer from the source, the target composition, the target location, the thermal and optical properties

of the target and the availability of air. For common ignition sources (hot object, intense electric arc, smouldering

material or flame), two types of ignition are possible: (1) glowing ignition (exothermic reaction at the surface of a

material with air) and (2) flaming ignition (ignition that occurs in the gas phase mixture of pyrolyzates and air).

Materials that ignite to glowing ignition may smoulder (combustion that occurs and propagates in the bulk material)

for some period. If conditions are appropriate, smouldering may undergo a transition to flaming ignition and rapid fire

spread. Materials that are ignited to flaming ignition may sustain the flaming mode and, if conditions are right, may

spread to a larger size. Conversely, if the ignition experience is short, the flaming mode may be transient, and either

convert to glowing or smouldering, or simply self-extinguish. As with the ignition process, the transient or sustained

behaviour of the post-ignition condition is controlled by the composition and constitution of the material.

Regardless of ignition source, the response of a material to heating is dominated by the physical properties of the

material. A detailed discussion of the ignition of solids can be found in reference [4]. Useful information can also be

found in [5] and [6]. ISO/TC92/SC1 is working on a document describing the theoretical background of the ISO

reaction-to-fire tests (ISO/TR 11696-1). The document includes a discussion of ignition under radiant heat

exposure.

The thermal theory of ignition assumes that each material can be characterised by a critical ignition temperature

[7]

T . By using simple heat-conduction theory, one can show that, for thermally thick material behaviour, the ignition

delay is given by:
2 2
t ∝ krc(T – T ) /(&q – &q ) (1)
ig ig 0 ext loss

For thermally thin material behaviour, i.e. if the temperature in the material is approximately unif

...

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