Design of intumescent fire protection for concrete filled structural hollow sections

David Rush*, Luke Bisby, Martin Gillie, Allan Jowsey, Barbara Lane

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Design of intumescent protection systems for concrete filled structural steel hollow (CFS) sections in the UK typically requires three input parameters in practice: (1) a required fire resistance rating; (2) and 'effective' section factor; and (3) a limiting steel temperature for the hollow structural section. While the first of these inputs is generally prescribed in building codes, the latter two require greater engineering knowledge and judgement. This paper examines results from standard furnace tests on 26 CFS sections, 14 of which were protected with intumescent coatings by application of current UK design guidance. The protected sections demonstrate highly conservative fire protection under standard fire exposure, a conservatism not typically observed for protected unfilled steel hollow sections. The possible causes of the observed conservatism are discussed, and it is demonstrated that the method currently used to calculate the effective section factor for protected CFS columns is based on a false presumption that both unprotected and protected CFS columns can be treated in the same manner. A conservative method for determination of the steel limiting temperature for CFS columns is proposed; this can be applied by designers to more efficiently specify intumescent fire protection for CFS members. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-23
Number of pages11
JournalFire Safety Journal
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014


  • Composite columns
  • Intumescent fire protection
  • Forensic analysis
  • Section factor
  • Limiting temperature
  • Design


Dive into the research topics of 'Design of intumescent fire protection for concrete filled structural hollow sections'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this