The Fire Safety Engineering Groups (FSEG's) research related to fire
dynamics, fire modelling, human behaviour and evacuation modelling is
saving lives because it is used to design safer aircraft, ships and
buildings. Its Economic impact stems from licensing the SMARTFIRE and
EXODUS software to over 300 organisations in 32 countries and commercial
applications of the software which enable the realisation of cutting-edge
designs and enabling the continual safe use of heritage structures such as
the Statue of Liberty. Impact on Practitioners is a result of changes to
international maritime guidelines based in FSEG research and the wide
scale use of the SMARTFIRE and EXODUS software by engineers around the
world. Society impact results from its research featuring in a number of
popular documentary programmes attracting audiences measured in the
The Fire Safety Engineering Groups (FSEG's) research related to human behaviour associated
with evacuation and evacuation modelling is saving lives because it is used to design safer aircraft,
ships and buildings. Its Economic impact stems from licensing the EXODUS software to 250
organisations in 32 countries and commercial applications of the software which enable the
realisation of cutting-edge designs and enabling the continual safe use of heritage structures such
as the Statue of Liberty. Public Policy impact stems from FSEG aviation research influencing
Australian government aviation safety policy while impact on Practitioners is a result of changes to
international maritime guidelines based in FSEG research and the wide scale use of the EXODUS
software by engineers around the world. Society impact results from its research featuring in a
number of popular documentary programmes attracting audiences measured in the millions.
Enhanced public safety and transformation of structural design for fire
has resulted from improved building design through ERPE researchers'
development of new and unique design methodologies, frameworks and tools
for analysing fire spread. Fire safety engineering research within ERPE
has created an improved scientific understanding of the effect of fire on
structures and materials. Structural and fire safety engineers across UK,
EU, USA, Canada as well as those who are members of international fire
safety bodies have subsequently implemented significant advances for the
design of safer, more economical, sustainable, and architecturally
ERPE research has thus assisted the design and construction of
increasingly optimised, sustainable, and economical buildings globally
with significant changes in building design and regulation, particularly
Our research provided the evidence to persuade companies to develop fire retardant formulations
based on naturally occurring mixtures of hydromagnesite and huntite (HMH) that were more
effective, cheaper, and greener than the market leader, aluminium hydroxide (ATH). Before the
research started, in 2005, annual global sales of HMH as a fire retardant were less than [TEXT REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION] 000
tonnes. By 2012, sales had already doubled to [TEXT REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION] 000 tonnes (£[TEXT REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION] M) and continue to grow.
LKAB minerals supply over 90% of the global market in HMH, and as a result of UCLan's fire
retardant research, expect HMH to replace at least 25% of fine grade ATH within 5 years
(increasing HMH sales to £[TEXT REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION] M). Not only is HMH a more effective fire retardant, it does not
have the environmental problems associated with ATH.
The use of fire retardants is a requirement to reduce fire severity and deaths but is also
controversial due to environmental (leaching) and health consequences of commonly used
halogenated fire retardants. A novel methodology has been developed and validated in the Fire
Safety Engineering Research and Technology centre (FireSERT), Built Environment Research
Institute, for the prediction of large-scale burning behaviour of fire retarded polymers by combining
small-scale (mg size) experiments with computer simulations of fire growth and toxicity. The
research has been instrumental for companies in redesigning their products (fire doors and
intumescent coatings) and is informing the development of EU regulations regarding the use and
replacement of halogenated fire retardants. The research output has been published in leading
journals, cited widely internationally and referenced by key organisations.
The Steady State Tube Furnace (ISO/FDIS 19700) allows fire toxicity to be
quantified in real fire conditions. This has led to the introduction of
"acidity classification" for cables in the European Construction Products
Directive/Regulation (2008/2013) (as a surrogate for fire toxicity) to
promote the use of safer, low smoke, zero halogen (LSZH) alternatives to
PVC cables. Additionally, architects and building specifiers can use our
data to avoid the most toxic foam insulation materials in low energy
buildings. The biggest impact of our work, the global reduction in loss of
life in fire is probably the most difficult to quantify, as too many other
factors influence the fire statistics.
This case study concerns research in the fields of fire prevention and
community safety. A novel causal factor model of accidental dwelling fire
risk was developed and incorporated into a geographical information system
for fire prevention management, which has been used by Merseyside Fire and
Rescue Service (MF&RS) to support delivery of fire prevention
activities within the region since 2010.
In addition, a novel customer segmentation approach was developed to
provide an enhanced understanding of at-risk social groups in terms of
combined fire risk, health risk, social care risk, and crime risk. This
formed the basis for further analysis of causal factors within the same
geographical area, enabling the deployment of yet more accurate targeting
of fire prevention resources.
The impact of the research has been the adoption of the approach as a
form of best practice to improve targeting of fire prevention activities,
which is a contributing factor to the observed reduction in fire
incidence. This was associated with a reduction in accidental dwelling
fires by approximately 12% (163 incidents) observed across Merseyside
between 2009/10 and 2012/13.
Wildfire was barely recognised as a significant hazard in the UK prior to
University of Manchester
(UoM) research, that significantly changed stakeholders' and national
This work on mapping and forecasting moorland wildfire risk has informed
the Cabinet Office, and
has demonstrated clear impact on fire preparedness planning in the Peak
District National Park
(where it is estimated that a large fire is potentially avoided each
year). Following an ESRC-NERC
seminar series (FIRES), the England and Wales Wildfire Forum (EWWF) was
EWWF persuading Government to further amend national policy on wildfire.
This impact is
ongoing, with DEFRA including wildfire in its `National Adaptation
Programme', and the Cabinet
Office recently including wildfire within the `National Risk Assessment'
The development of standards and design guides at a European level for composite concrete
floors with cellular steel beams has been informed by research undertaken in the Fire Safety
Engineering Research and Technology centre (FireSERT), Built Environment Research Institute.
Central to the impact is the establishment of technical rules for the fire safe design of buildings
constructed with the use of cellular beams. Research at the University of Ulster has demonstrated
that the use of unprotected cellular beams can reduce the cost of fire protection. This research was
corroborated by a major fire test conducted at an international scientific conference hosted by
FireSERT in February 2010. Design guidance for innovative safe structures in fire scenarios have
been published in leading journals with high impact factors.
Research carried out Aston University into the use of Operational
Research and Social Marketing techniques to optimize the creation,
implementation and evaluation of preparedness for different types of
emergency, has led to impacts at local, national and international level.
This research has: