The full benefits can only be revealed when SFE becomes an integral part of building design, and everybody involved in the building design process – architects, structural engineers, and other design professionals, is aware of the SFE issues.
Fire Safety Engineering: The application of scientific and engineering principles, rules (Codes), and expert judgement, based on an understanding of the phenomena and effects of fire and of the reaction and behaviour of people to fire, to protect people, property and the environment from the destructive effects of fire.
Structural Fire Engineering: Structural Fire Engineering deals with specific aspects of passive fire protection in terms of analysing the thermal effects of fires on buildings and designing structural members for adequate load bearing resistance, i.e. the structural fire resistance. SFE analysis and design shall involve fire modelling, thermal analysis and structural analysis.
Structural Fire Engineering allows fire protection measures to be integrated into structural design. If SFE could be applied in the design process from the very beginning of a building project, it can bring significant benefits to the project.
The benefits include:
Better understanding of structural fire behaviour leading to a higher level of fire safety
Greater flexibility to develop alternative and cost effective solutions for fire protection
Potential construction cost savings
Potential long-term maintenance and management cost savings
Potential insurance savings