The Structural Capacity of Laminated Timber Compression Elements in Fire: A Meta-Analysis

Felix Wiesner, Luke Bisby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Modern building construction is increasingly applying laminated timber products as structural members for larger and more ambitious projects, both commercial and resi- dential. As a consequence, designers require reliable knowledge and design tools to assess the structural capacity of laminated mass timber elements in fire. This paper reviews and assesses available data and methods to design for fire resistance of laminated mass timber compression elements. Historical data from fire resistance tests is presented and compared against the available design calculation methods. The underlying assumptions of the thermal and structural analyses applied within the presented calculation method- ologies are discussed. The resulting meta-analysis suggests that the available methods are all able to make reasonable predictions (with an average mean absolute error (MAPE) of 22 % across methods) of the fire resistance of glued-laminated columns exposed to standard fires; however, the available methods for CLT walls give inconsistent (MAPE of 46 % across all methods and 30 % excluding extreme outliers) and potentially non- conservative results (up to 88 % of investigated cases are statistically non-conservative). Additional research on loaded compression elements is therefore needed.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberFISJ-D-17-00028
Number of pages25
JournalFire Safety Journal
Early online date18 May 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 May 2018


  • Structural Timber
  • Compression
  • Fire Resistance
  • Cross-laminated timber
  • Glued-laminated timber


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