The wood products industry wants to expand its market share in non-residential buildings. This is a challenging goal because building codes exhibit a bias against the use of wood products, particularly in the construction of non-residential buildings. The move towards adoption of performance-based building codes offers the promise of eliminating such biases. However, in order to be prepared for the introduction of performance-based codes, architects, engineers and building code officials have pointed out the need for engineering tools to assess the fire performance of buildings.
This five-year project was initiated to develop fire-safety design tools for non-residential wood-frame buildings, and to foster development and delivery of educational programs to train students and practitioners in performance-based fire-safety design. In order to achieve these goals an NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Fire Safety Engineering was established at Carleton University in March of 2001. This report summarises the progress towards these goals made by the Chair in the first two years of his tenure.
The study tour to Norway and Sweden was planned and coordinated by Russell C. Moody and Anton TenWolde from the U.S. Forest Products Laboratory. Forintek Canada Corp. was invited to participate on the tour with them with a view to beginning cooperative planning and research in areas of environmental concern, specifically moisture management in wood framed structures. The tour took place from August 17 to September 1, 1983. The author also stopped off in England to visit the British Research Establishment Laboratory in Princes Risborough and the TRADA laboratory in the same vicinity. Special appreciation is accorded to Mr. Torbjorn Schmidt at the Swedish Forest Products Laboratory in Stockholm and Mr. Erik Aasheim at the Norwegian Institute of Wood Technology. Their recommendations and assistance in setting up visits and tours was of great help. Mr. Schmidt also accompanied us in some of our journeys in Sweden and joined us in Norway for some of our meetings there.