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Performance-based structural fire design webinar scheduled for May 2022

Robert A. Chmielowski and Beth Tubbs

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The Society of Fire Protection Engineers, the Charles Pankow Foundation, and the International Code Council are set to host a webinar on expanding the implementation and adoption of performance-based structural fire design. The webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, May 10, 2022, and is free to all individuals who pre-register. 

Performance-Based Structural Fire Design (PBSFD) is one of the most promising tools for designing, analysing, and evaluating thermal effects on structural systems. Introduced in Appendix E of ASCE 7-16, PBSFD is an approach that permits the explicit evaluation of a structure’s ability to meet specific performance objectives under a variety of realistic design fire scenarios, unlike current prescriptive methods where satisfactory performance is implicit. This webinar will provide an overview for individuals who are involved with the design, construction, or regulatory approvals of buildings.

Robert A. Chmielowski, PE, SE, senior principal at Magnusson Klemencic Associates, and industry champion of the Charles Pankow Foundation PBSFD education initiative said: “Performance-Based Structural Fire Design is quickly gaining momentum in the engineering community as a viable approach to delivering safe, reliable, and efficient building designs in a way that has many advantages over traditional prescriptive methodologies. We are excited to sponsor an education program geared towards building officials and fire marshals which will help promote the adoption of PBSFD nationwide.”

The webinar will cover the differences between standard fire design and PBSFD, learn the state of practice of PBSFD in the US, understand the approval process through Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs), and identify new and emerging resources. 

Beth Tubbs, PE, FSFPE, senior staff engineer at the International Code Council, and president at the Society of Fire Protection Engineers said: “Performance-Based Structural Fire Design is a promising tool that demonstrates the performance of structures based upon specific performance objectives and realistic fire design scenarios. In addition to this webinar, we hope that resources from the International Code Council, Society of Fire Protection Engineers, and others, will aid in the successful implementation of this important design tool.”

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