POST-FIRE SAFETY OF CONCRETE COLUMNS, An engineering-oriented reliability-based assessment tool


  • Ruben Van Coile
  • Robby Caspeele
  • Luc Taerwe



Concrete insulation properties and chemo-physical stability up to 400-500°C generally prevents concrete structures from collapsing in fire. Consequently, the safety assessment of reinforced concrete members – and specifically columns – is a must past any severe fire. This post-fire assessment should be based on reliability considerations, as many uncertainties are associated with both the fire evolution and the residual mechanical properties of the materials. The reliability considerations should clarify whether the column has an adequate safety level for its intended post-fire use. An easy-to-use reliability-based assessment method is presented in this paper to determine the bearing capacity of a reinforce concrete column after a fire, and the safety performance of the method is investigated. The proposed method is shown to be at the same time easy to use and very reliable.