Effects of fire on a tall steel building designed to resist progressive collapse

Morgan C. Neal, Maria Eugenia Moreyra Garlock, Spencer E. Quiel, Shalva Marjanishvili

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

16 Scopus citations


Design for progressive collapse resistance requires that the structure remains stable in the event that a primary structural member is removed following an extreme event such as blast or impact. However, these methodologies do not take into account the potential hazard of fire that is often a byproduct of an extreme event. This paper examines the fire resistance of a prototype steel high-rise building, which meets progressive collapse requirements per GSA. The building is modeled with the removal of a perimeter column thus simulating a consequence immediately following an extreme event. The building is then subjected to uncoupled thermal - structural analyses representing various fire scenarios based on the following parameters: (1) fire protection, (2) fire type, (3) location, and (4) fire spreading. The results show that even though the building meets progressive collapse design requirements, if the building sustains localized damage to the extent where nearby fire protection is removed or damaged, a subsequent fire may quickly lead to building collapse. While this finding is for one particular building prototype, it is a potential concern particularly for high-rise buildings, which must remain stable for a substantial time to completely evacuate building occupants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationStructures Congress 2012 - Proceedings of the 2012 Structures Congress
Number of pages11
StatePublished - 2012
EventStructures Congress 2012 - Chicago, IL, United States
Duration: Mar 29 2012Mar 31 2012

Publication series

NameStructures Congress 2012 - Proceedings of the 2012 Structures Congress


OtherStructures Congress 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityChicago, IL

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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