Structural behaviour during a vertically travelling fire

C. Roeben, M. Gillie, J. Torero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study considers a multi-storey composite frame subject to a fire which travels vertically between three floors. Previous work has analysed the behaviour of this structure when subject to simultaneous fires on three floors. It highlighted the importance of the cooling regime adopted and the relative axial stiffness of the steel beams to the overall behaviour of the structure. This paper extends that work by investigating the more realistic case of a vertically travelling fire. Various inter-floor time delays are considered as well as two floor beam sizes. It is found that the inter-floor time delay affects the global behaviour substantially. The behaviour is also in part dependent on the stiffness of the floor beams. Axial forces caused by thermal expansion in individual floors may induce cyclic loading on the column which is nor normally considered in structural Fire design but may be important in determining structural behaviour. Identifying a worst-case rate of vertical fire spread is not possible due to the range of structural responses. So it is recommended that designers consider several rates of spread an(] ensure structural integrity for each. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-197
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Constructional Steel Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


  • Fire
  • Performance-based design
  • Modelling
  • Travelling fires
  • Multi-storey
  • Structural design


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