The Feasibility of Protecting Residential Structures from Wildfires using a Fixed Exterior Fire Fighting System
The program will be delivered by faculty and students from the Fire Protection Engineering Department at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
Milosh Puchovsky, PE, FSFPE, Professor of Practice & Associate Department Head
Albert Simeoni, PhD, Professor & Department Head
Emily Han, WPI Civil Engineering and Fire Protection Engineering Student
Dylan Parrow, WPI Civil Engineering and Fire Protection Engineering Student
Ariana Rozen, WPI Chemical Engineering and Fire Protection Engineering Student
Wildfires are a very complex phenomena having devastating impacts on our way of life. Each year, millions of acres and hundreds of structures are destroyed by wildfires across the planet. The Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) grows significantly each year as humans build in areas of moderate to high fire risk. Concurrently, climate change is creating worse and more frequent wildfire conditions.
Research has identified certain key factors that cause ignition of structures and the spread of fire between them. Once fire moves from wildlands into developed areas, flames are fueled by engulfed homes and structures, creating major conflagrations and devastating entire communities.
An additional means to prevent or mitigate conflagrations may be through the development of external fixed fire-fighting systems attached to the structure. While the concept is discussed to some degree, widespread use of any system has not occurred due to the many technical issues involved such as fire threat articulation and quantification, appropriate agent selection and application rates, agent delivery methods, spray coverage, system activation, long term performance, etc. This program presents a WPI research project addressing the complexity and feasibility of such active exterior fire-fighting systems and puts forth a prototype concept.
Copyright © 2019
New England Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers