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Interface modelling between CFD and FEM analysis: the dual-layer post-processing model

Daphne Pantousa (University of Thessaly, Volos, Greece)
Euripidis Mistakidis (Department of Civil Engineering, University of Thessaly, Volos, Greece)

Engineering Computations

ISSN: 0264-4401

Article publication date: 12 June 2017




The primary purpose of this paper is the development of a fire–structure interface (FSI) model, which is referred in this study as a simplified “dual-layer” model. It is oriented for design purposes, in the cases where fire-compartments exceed the “regular” dimensions, as they are defined by the guidelines of the codes (EN 1991-1-2).


The model can be used at the post-processing stage of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis and it is based on the gas-temperature field (spatial and temporal) of the fire-compartment. To use the “dual-layer” model, first the gas-temperature (discrete) function along the height of the fire-compartment, at discrete plan–view points should be determined through the output of the CFD analysis. The model “compresses” the point data to (spatial) virtual zones, which are divided into two layers (with respect to the height of the fire-compartment) of uniform temperature: the upper (hot) layer and the lower (cold) layer.


The model calculates the temporal evolution of the gas-temperature in the fire compartment in every virtual zone which is divided in two layers (hot and cold layer).


The main advantage of this methodology is that actually only three different variables (height of interface upper-layer temperature and lower-layer temperature) are exported during the post-processing stage of the CFD analysis, for every virtual zone. Next, the gas-temperature can be used for the determination of the temperature profile of structural members using simple models that are proposed in EN 1993-1-2.



This research has been co-financed by the European Union (European Social Fund – ESF) and Greek national funds through the Operational Program “Education and Lifelong Learning” of the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) – Research Funding Program: Heraclitus II. Investing in knowledge society through the European Social Fund.


Pantousa, D. and Mistakidis, E. (2017), "Interface modelling between CFD and FEM analysis: the dual-layer post-processing model", Engineering Computations, Vol. 34 No. 4, pp. 1166-1190.



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