The use of engineered timber products such as cross-laminated timber (CLT) is of increasing interest to architects and designers due to their desirable aesthetic, environmental, and structural properties. A key factor preventing widespread uptake of these materials is the uncertainty regarding their performance in fire. Currently, the predominant approach to quantifying the structural fire resistance of timber elements is the charring rate, which allows estimation of residual cross-section and hence strength. The charring rate is usually determined by testing timber specimens in a furnace by exposure to a ‘standard fire’. However, it is recognized that the resulting charring rates are not necessarily appropriate for non-standard fire exposures or for characterizing the structural response in a real timber building. The effect of heating rate on the charring rate of CLT samples is investigated. The charring rate resulting from three heating scenarios (constant, simulated ‘standard fire’ and quadratically increasing) was calculated using interpolation of in-depth temperature measurements during exposure to heating from a mobile array of radiant panels, or in a Fire Propagation Apparatus (FPA). Charring rate is shown to vary both spatially and temporally, and as a function of heating rate within the range 0.36–0.79 mm/min. The charring rate for tests carried out under simulated ‘standard fire’ exposures were shown to agree with the available literature, thus partially verifying the new testing approach; however under other heating scenarios the Eurocode charring rate guidance was found to be unconservative for some of the heat flux exposures in this study. A novel charring rate model is presented based on the experimental results. The potential implications of this study for structural fire resistance analysis and design of timber structures are discussed. The analysis demonstrates that heating rate, sample size and orientation, and test setup have significant effects on charring rate and the overall pyrolysis, and thus need to be further evaluated to further facilitate the use of structural timber in design.
The charring behavior of timber structural elements, such as the charring rate of timber elements and delamination of glue-laminated timber, affects the structural stability of timber buildings. The charring rate of timber elements varies depending on the severity of fire exposure. However, charring rates have been ordinarily investigated in...
The combustibility of timber is one of the factors that restrict the use of structural elements of wood in buildings in Brazil. This paper describes an experimental investigation of the charring rate of wood species. The charring rate is one of the key parameters for the design of load bearing timber structures. The purpose of this study is...
International Conference on Performance-based and Life-cycle Structural Engineering
December 9-11, 2015, Brisbane, Australia
Tall timber building designs have utilized cross-laminated timber (CLT) significantly over the past decade due the sustainable nature of timber and the many advantages of using an engineered mass timber product. Several design methods have been established to account for the composite action between the orthogonally adhered timber plies. These methods assume perfect bonding of the adjacent plies by the adhesive. CLT designs methods for timber in fire have also been formulated. These methods rely on the relatively constant charring rate of timber to calculate a sacrificial layer to be added onto the cross-sectional area. While these methods focus on the timber failure mode of reduced cross section by charring, the failure mode of ply delamination is often overlooked and understudied. Due to the reduction of shear and normal strength in the adhesive, the perfect bond assumption can be questioned and a deeper look into the mechanics of CLT composite action and interfacial stress needs be conducted. This paper seeks to highlight the various design methods for CLT design and identify the failure mode of delamination not present in the current design codes.
Investigations showed that large timber members exposed to fire have excellent fire-resistance. But very little research has been done on the performance of connections in timber structures exposed to fire. The dowel-type connections with slotted-in steel plates have widely been used in timber structures, sometime as moment resisting...
International Journal of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Cross-laminated timber is increasingly being used in the construction of high-rise buildings due to its simple manufacturing system. In term of fire resistance, cross-laminated timber panels are promoted as having excellent fire resistance, comparable to that of non-combustible materials and to heavy timber construction, due to the ability of thick wood assemblies to char slowly at a predictable rate while maintaining most of their strength during the fire exposure. This paper presents an overview of fire performance of cross-laminated timber and evaluation of its resistance to elevated temperature in comparison to homogeneous timber panels. Charring rates for cross-laminated timber panels of those obtained experimentally were compared with those provided by Eurocode simplified calculation methods. Keywords—Timber structure, cross-laminated timber, charring rate, timber fire resistance.
Twenty-three (23) cross-laminated timber (CLT) panels were exposed to a standard fire at an intermediate scale. This paper discusses several encapsulation methods used to increase the fire resistance of those panels, with emphasis on encapsulation times ...