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Concrete Under Fire

Concrete under Fire: High Temperature Effects on Concrete

Analysis of Concrete and related Geo-Materials at Elevated Temperatures


Cementitious materials have numerous applications in many aspects of the civil engineering and oil & gas industries.  In many of these applications the materials may be exposed to elevated temperatures, either by consequence of their intended function, for example in  structures for nuclear power stations, aircraft runways, deep well grouts, radioactive waste containers etc. or unintentionally, as a result of accidental or deliberate exposure to fire or other heating excursions.

Following various extreme events around the world, including accidents, arson and terrorism, as well as renewed interest in nuclear power in the UK and continued development within the oil and gas sector, the performance of cementitious and other associated geo-materials when exposed to elevated temperatures has come to the forefront of interest for both industrial and academic study.  Investigations and recent research are undergoing to better understand how these materials behave under combined thermal and mechanical loading.

What is clear is that they demonstrate extremely complex behaviour that is dependent upon the physical and chemical interactions and interdependencies of the various solid, fluid and gas phases present within these composite materials and that elevated temperatures have a number of observable effects such as loss of strength and loss of stiffness etc. .  What is further clear is that their behaviour varies with the type of material as well as the rate, duration and extent of heating.

It is also recognised that current UK and European design codes do not adequately deal with many aspects of these specialist applications, for example in the design of nuclear power structures (where ACI codes are preferred), or in the design of structures to resist fire, particularly where high performance concretes are used (where, at best, empirically derived solutions are advocated).

This seminar addressed these various issues and highlighted the important factors that should be considered in the analysis of these materials under various circumstances. 

Please find below a brief summary report, from notes taken during this event.





Concrete Properties at Elevated Temperatures
Martin Gillie, School of Engineering, The University of Edinburgh


Concrete at Elevated Temperature: Effects of Heating Under Multiaxial Compressive Stress
Mihail Petkovski, Sheffield University

Codes and Standards – Particularly Eurocodes and ACI-349
Dimitrios Kourepinis andStewart Gallocher, AMEC


Fire Analysis of Reinforced Concrete Precast Segmental Tunnels
Giovanna Lilliu, TNO DIANA


Verification and Validation of Concrete Containment under Combined Pressure and Thermal Loading
Nawal Prinja, AMEC


Aspects of Advanced Modelling Approaches
Chris Pearce, University of Glasgow