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Experimental study of the effectiveness of air curtains of variable width and injection angle to block fire-induced smoke in a tunnel configuration

Longxing Yu (UGent) , Fang Liu, Tarek Beji (UGent) , Miao-Cheng Weng and Bart Merci (UGent)
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Abstract
Small-scale experiments have been conducted to study the sealing effect of an air curtain for fire-induced smoke confinement in a tunnel configuration. The processed data confirmed the results obtained earlier from blind Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations [1] using the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) 6.5.3 [2,3]. Furthermore, the CFD simulations provided complementary information on the detailed flow and temperature fields which are difficult to obtain in experiments with the available techniques. A parametric study is performed, covering a range of air curtain velocities, slot widths, injection angles and total fire heat release rates (HRRs). The momentum ratio R, defined as the ratio of the vertically downward air curtain momentum to the horizontal smoke layer momentum at the position of the air curtain, is confirmed to be a key parameter for the air curtain performance. A ratio R ≈ 10 is recommended for the optimum sealing effect in terms of smoke confinement. In addition, two other important parameters that determine the performance of air curtains for smoke confinement are presented. The first parameter is the dimensionless shape factor AR (AR = Width/Length) that characterizes the dilution effect of the air curtain jet. The second parameter is the injection angle θ that characterizes the horizontal force of the air curtain. The air curtain sealing effectiveness increases with both the increase of slot width (shape factor AR) and injection angle (θ). The air curtain width has a limited influence on the performance of the air curtain whilst the injection angle has a more significant influence on the sealing effectiveness of the air curtain for the scenarios considered in this study. An optimal injection angle of 30° inclined to the fire source is recommended in the engineering design of the air curtain for smoke confinement for situations where the fire location can be pre-determined to be only at one side of an air curtain.
Keywords
Smoke confinement, Air curtain, Tunnel fire, Experiment, FDS

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MLA
Yu, Longxing, et al. “Experimental Study of the Effectiveness of Air Curtains of Variable Width and Injection Angle to Block Fire-Induced Smoke in a Tunnel Configuration.” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES, vol. 134, Elsevier BV, 2018, pp. 13–26.
APA
Yu, L., Liu, F., Beji, T., Weng, M.-C., & Merci, B. (2018). Experimental study of the effectiveness of air curtains of variable width and injection angle to block fire-induced smoke in a tunnel configuration. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES, 134, 13–26.
Chicago author-date
Yu, Longxing, Fang Liu, Tarek Beji, Miao-Cheng Weng, and Bart Merci. 2018. “Experimental Study of the Effectiveness of Air Curtains of Variable Width and Injection Angle to Block Fire-Induced Smoke in a Tunnel Configuration.” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES 134: 13–26.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Yu, Longxing, Fang Liu, Tarek Beji, Miao-Cheng Weng, and Bart Merci. 2018. “Experimental Study of the Effectiveness of Air Curtains of Variable Width and Injection Angle to Block Fire-Induced Smoke in a Tunnel Configuration.” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES 134: 13–26.
Vancouver
1.
Yu L, Liu F, Beji T, Weng M-C, Merci B. Experimental study of the effectiveness of air curtains of variable width and injection angle to block fire-induced smoke in a tunnel configuration. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES. 2018;134:13–26.
IEEE
[1]
L. Yu, F. Liu, T. Beji, M.-C. Weng, and B. Merci, “Experimental study of the effectiveness of air curtains of variable width and injection angle to block fire-induced smoke in a tunnel configuration,” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES, vol. 134, pp. 13–26, 2018.
@article{8570353,
  abstract     = {Small-scale experiments have been conducted to study the sealing effect of an air curtain for fire-induced smoke confinement in a tunnel configuration. The processed data confirmed the results obtained earlier from blind Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations [1] using the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) 6.5.3 [2,3]. Furthermore, the CFD simulations provided complementary information on the detailed flow and temperature fields which are difficult to obtain in experiments with the available techniques. A parametric study is performed, covering a range of air curtain velocities, slot widths, injection angles and total fire heat release rates (HRRs). The momentum ratio R, defined as the ratio of the vertically downward air curtain momentum to the horizontal smoke layer momentum at the position of the air curtain, is confirmed to be a key parameter for the air curtain performance. A ratio R ≈ 10 is recommended for the optimum sealing effect in terms of smoke confinement. In addition, two other important parameters that determine the performance of air curtains for smoke confinement are presented. The first parameter is the dimensionless shape factor AR (AR = Width/Length) that characterizes the dilution effect of the air curtain jet. The second parameter is the injection angle θ that characterizes the horizontal force of the air curtain. The air curtain sealing effectiveness increases with both the increase of slot width (shape factor AR) and injection angle (θ). The air curtain width has a limited influence on the performance of the air curtain whilst the injection angle has a more significant influence on the sealing effectiveness of the air curtain for the scenarios considered in this study. An optimal injection angle of 30° inclined to the fire source is recommended in the engineering design of the air curtain for smoke confinement for situations where the fire location can be pre-determined to be only at one side of an air curtain.},
  author       = {Yu, Longxing and Liu, Fang and Beji, Tarek and Weng, Miao-Cheng and Merci, Bart},
  issn         = {1290-0729},
  journal      = {INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF THERMAL SCIENCES},
  keywords     = {Smoke confinement,Air curtain,Tunnel fire,Experiment,FDS},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {13--26},
  publisher    = {Elsevier BV},
  title        = {Experimental study of the effectiveness of air curtains of variable width and injection angle to block fire-induced smoke in a tunnel configuration},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijthermalsci.2018.07.044},
  volume       = {134},
  year         = {2018},
}

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