Burning behaviour of liquid pool fires in corridors and thermal characteristics of resulting externally venting flames

  • Konstantinos Chotzoglou

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


Recent major fire events clearly demonstrate the urgency of understanding fundamental physics and mechanisms of fire development in enclosures and those of resulting externally venting flames (EVF). Even though great effort has been devoted for addressing fire development inside cubic-like enclosures, limited data exist in corridor-like enclosures. This work investigates experimentally the burning behaviour of liquid pool fires in a corridor enclosure having an opening and a façade extending above. A parametric study was performed to examine the influence of the size and location of the pool fire, the opening size and the fuel type on the fire development inside the corridor and thermal characteristics of resulting EVF on the facade. Experimental results indicate that fire development of liquid fuels is considerably different from that of gaseous fuels, because its burning rate depends on the heat feedback from the flame and hot gases whereas it is predefined for gaseous fuels. Three distinct regions were observed for burning behaviour and subsequent EVF depending primarily on the fire size and ventilation factor. Under ventilationcontrolled conditions, the fuel burning rate and the air inflow rate were found less than in cubic enclosures due to non-uniform temperature distribution inside the corridor. A power dependence of EVF height in relation to excess heat release rate was deduced. The heat flux along the centreline of the façade shows similar trends to those observed for gaseous fuels, except for the cases with large opening widths in which the maximum heat flux on the façade was located off the centreline and EVF emerge from the opening as two separate flames. In practical, the correlations developed in this research can be applied to predict fire development inside a corridor and heat exposure of the façade and the data obtained are useful for validation of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models.
Date of AwardOct 2018
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorJianping Zhang (Supervisor) & Seng-Kwan Choi (Supervisor)


  • Enclosure fires
  • Façade fires
  • Fentilation factor
  • Ethanol pool fires

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