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Fire-Resistant Properties of Building Materials - Assignment Example

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This paper "Fire-Resistant Properties of Building Materials" focuses on the fact that it is essential to consider the properties of materials used in the construction of buildings and homes. The material used must not be subject to disintegration at high temperatures associated with combustion.  …
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Fire-Resistant Properties of Building Materials
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Download file to see previous pages In addition, a recommendation will be made on the building materials best suited for the construction of a proposed building.
Fires generally produce temperatures of approximately 1000C which can seriously affect the structural integrity of a building. Among the effects of fire is the loss of strength of the building material which can result in building collapse. In addition, thermal expansion associated with high temperatures may affect structures that are not directly in the vicinity of the fire. With the exception of timber, all materials used in building construction will begin to lose strength at temperatures exceeding 250C. This effect may be permanent. Metals begin to form droplets beginning at 300-350C. Concrete changes colour to pink at 250-300C. Chemical effects occur at 650C for aluminium and its alloys, and 1100-1200C for copper and iron (Prentice, 1990).
Timber is one of the oldest materials used in building construction. The properties of timber are dependent on the type of wood used in construction, and how it has been treated. Wood responds well to tensional and compression forces but can bend due to the fibrous nature of this material. Wood can be a fire resistant material as it is subject to charring, which means that the wood in the centre may be protected during combustion to retain the structural integrity of the building. For the most part, however, timber is rapidly consumed by fire and can enhance the intensity of a fire since the material is subject to combustion. Timber used in building materials can be made more fire-resistant by coating the surface of the timber with fire-resistant chemicals such as ammonium phosphate and soleplate, borax and boric acid (Jones, 1986).
Heavy wood timbers may be fire-resistant since the wood burns slowly inward causing charring of the exterior while the inner wood layers remain protected for significant periods of time.     ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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