Computer Simulation of the Fires in the World Trade Center Towers. Federal Building and Fire Safety Investigation of the World Trade Center Disaster.
Computer Simulation of the Fires in the World Trade
Center Towers. Federal Building and Fire Safety
Investigation of the World Trade Center Disaster.
McGrattan, K. B.; Bouldin, C.; Forney, G. P.
NIST NCSTAR 1-5F; 164 p. September 2005.
World Trade Center; high rise buildings; building
collapse; disasters; fire safety; fire investigations;
terrorists; terrorism; computer simulation;
computational fluid dynamics; smoke flow; high
temperature gases; large scale fire tests; pyrolysis;
This report presents the results of numerical
simulations of the fires in World Trade Center (WTC) 1
and WTC 2 on September 11, 2001. The calculations were
performed with the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) Fire Dynamics Simulator, a
computational fluid dynamics model that describes the
flow of smoke and hot gases from a fire. Before
performing the simulations, the model was validated by
comparing its predictions with measurements from a
series of large scale fire experiments performed at
NIST. The model also was enhanced to better describe the
pyrolysis of charring fuels, like wood; and the computer
program was re-configured to run on multiple processors.
Input data for the simulations of WTC 1 and WTC 2
consisted of descriptions of the properties of typical
office furnishings and jet fuel, floor layouts, exterior
damage, and interior damage estimates. Results of the
simulations were compared with visual observations.
Predicted temperatures and gas concentrations were
subsequently used to analyze the temperatures within
steel trusses and columns.