The MGM Grand Fire

The MGM Grand Fire occurred on November 21st 1980. It represents a significant case study in the study of Human Behavior in fire as well as for smoke dynamics. About 87 people were killed in this fire. Recently I had a chance to visit and talk to certain staff members at the current building over…

Interflam 2016 Conference Papers

Our team is very excited to be travelling to the Interflam conference this year. There we will be presenting 4 papers in posters and oral presentations. Papers have primarily been led by students on the team and involve a great and diverse set of collaborators. The conference is this July 4th through 6th in the…

New Book on Post-tensioned Concrete in fire

A new book will be published by Springer titled; Structural Fire Performance of Contemporary Post-tensioned Concrete Construction. The book is available now. You can now order or download it here . The book features: A follow up to my highly cited Fire Safety Journal 2011 literary review paper - doubling the amount of tests analyzed; New insights on bonded post-tensioned concrete construction; Concise…

Fifth Protect workshop

Last week myself, and some stellar students working with me, attended the Fifth International Workshop on Performance, Protection & Strengthening of Structures under Extreme Loading held at Michigan State University organised by Drs.  Kodur and Banthia. The workshop would be what I would consider one of the more major extreme event (structural fire being my focus) research gatherings in North America…

How I play with Lego grown up

Last month the company Lego released their Research Institute set (conceived by geoscientist Ellen Kooijman to promote science careers for women). The set features a woman chemist, a woman astronomer, and a woman archaeologist. The set sold out on the first day (online and in-store).  I managed to pick up a set though to support the message of…

What do Charles Dickens, Michael Faraday and James Braidwood have in common?

Be sure to check out my recent letter to the editor in Fire Technology this week here. The letter is a teaser of the History of fire sciences and technology project that I am currently putting together.  The letter is an essay describing Charles Dickens' role with promoting fire sciences to the greater public in the Victorian…

Flare night club fire

I took a stroll the other day through Kingston upon returning from NIST in Washington. Often we hear fires in the news, but we fail at times to see the resulting economic consequences which occur the days following (closed businesses from smoke damage etc.).  The above are several photos taken a few days after a fire…

The Fire of Beccles, November 1586

Part the History of fire sciences and technology project that I have been working on the last two years involves digitizing/archiving old documents related to fire sciences and technology. When I say old, I mean anything from 1920 all the way back to roman times. While some of these older documents speak of new ways to scientifically understand fire…

Urbanization and Fire Engineering

The last several weeks have been quite exciting spending time in Toronto, Canada. There I have been collaborating with a few companies on fire engineering projects (smoke management, fire protection, design etc.). To my amazement the city is literally turning into a 'tall building forest'. My last visit to Toronto for this long was in the…