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Published June 19, 2014

Computational Fluid Dynamics helps predict fire intensity & growth

How rapidly will flames spread through a burning building, and how soon will the temperature and mix of gases become dangerous enough to make various sections deadly to occupants?

Fire is a complex phenomenon in which critically important contributions are, unfortunately, not very well understood.

The goal of this research in computational fluid dynamics, which is led by Professor Paul DesJardin of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department and supported through an NSF Career Award, is to develop a better understanding of the turbulent flow for improved predictions of fire intensity and growth.

This graphic depicts the turbulent instability dynamics of large fire plumes using Large Eddy Simulation techniques. The simulations were conducted using computers at the University at Buffalo's Center for Computational Research.

PI: Dr. Paul DesJardin (MAE)