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Performance-Based Structural Fire Design Guidance Published by American Society of Civil Engineers

Parul Dubey on October 9, 2020 - in Buildings, News

Available to download for free


RESTON, Va.  – The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) has published Performance-Based Structural Fire Design: Exemplar Designs of Four Regionally Diverse Buildings using ASCE 7-16, Appendix E. This guidance, available free-of-charge to download, presents guidance for proper execution and potential benefits of structural fire protection.

SEI received a research grant from the Charles Pankow Foundation for $230,000 to develop and publish the state-of-the-art exemplar procedural guidance to properly execute a performance-based structural fire design (PBSFD) complying with the nationally adopted standard Minimum Design Loads and Associated Criteria for Buildings and Other Structures, ASCE 7-16, Appendix E Performance Based Design Procedures for Fire Effects on Structures, with guidance contained in Structural Fire Engineering, Manual of Practice 138.

Performance-Based Structural Fire Design includes the analysis of four regionally diverse, protected, steel-framed building designs by design teams from four leading structural engineering firms: Simpson Gumpertz & Heger (SGH), Magnusson Klemencic Associates (MKA), Thornton Tomasetti (TT) and Walter P Moore (WPM). The design teams worked closely with a panel of academic advisors from four institutions: University at Buffalo, Oregon State University, Johns Hopkins University and University College London (previously with University of Maryland).

Part I includes an overview of the methodology, a description of the project’s design procedures, and summaries of each design team’s analyses, results and conclusions. Part II includes four design team reports that further document and detail the evaluation of the design scenarios.

These exemplar designs demonstrate the most significant benefit of PBSFD, which is its explicit process to confirm structural system performance under fire exposure. This is a valuable resource for new building project stakeholders, including building officials, fire marshals or the appropriate Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) for final approval.

ASCE SEI prepared this exemplar guidance document with exclusive grant funding from the Charles Pankow Foundation. The project would not have been possible without the financial support to the Charles Pankow Foundation from the following project sponsors: American Institute of Steel Construction, American Society of Civil Engineers Industry Leaders Council, ArcelorMittal and MKA Foundation.

Performance-Based Structural Fire Design is available as a free download from the ASCE Library, the Structural Engineering Institute, and the Charles Pankow.


Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers represents more than 150,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America’s oldest national engineering society. ASCE works to raise awareness of the need to maintain and modernize the nation’s infrastructure using sustainable and resilient practices, advocates for increasing and optimizing investment in infrastructure, and improve engineering knowledge and competency. For more information, visit www.asce.org or www.infrastructurereportcard.org and follow us on Twitter, @ASCETweets and @ASCEGovRel.


About ASCE Structural Engineering Institute

Established in 1996, SEI advances our members’ careers, stimulates technological advancement, and improves professional practice. SEI drives the practical application of cutting-edge research by improving coordination and understanding between academia and practicing engineers. For more information, visit www.asce.org/SEI and follow us on Twitter, @ASCE_SEI


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