NIST Time|NIST Home|About NIST|Contact NIST

HomeAll Years:AuthorKeywordTitle2005-2010:AuthorKeywordTitle

Fire Whirl Simulations.

pdf icon Fire Whirl Simulations. (230 K)
Battaglia, F.; McGrattan, K. B.; Rehm, R. G.; Baum, H. R.

NISTIR 6242; October 1998.

National Institute of Standards and Technology. Annual Conference on Fire Research: Book of Abstracts. November 2-5, 1998, Gaithersburg, MD, Beall, K. A., Editor(s), 97-98 pp, 1998.

Available from:

National Technical Information Service (NTIS), Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Springfield, VA 22161.
Telephone: 1-800-553-6847 or 703-605-6000;
Fax: 703-605-6900.
Order number: PB99-102519


fire research; fire science; fire suppression; fire whirls; simulation; temperature field


Fire whirls are a rare but potentially catastrophic form of fire. In order for one to exist, there must be an external source of organized angular momentum that products large swirl velocity components as air is entrained into the fire plume. The vertical acceleration induced by the buoyancy generates strain fields which stretch out the flames as they wrap around the nominal plume centerline. Fire whirls are known to increase substantially the danger of naturally occurring or post-disaster fires.