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Friday, May 01, 2009

Visit by Dr John Watts and seminar on Fire Risk Analysis

Dr John Watts, Director of the Fire Safety Institute (USA) and Adjunct Professor of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering at the University of Waterloo (Canada), will give the seminar "Some Aspects of Fire Risk Analysis" on Friday 8 May in the Alexander Graham Bell Bldg. Seminar room.

Dr Watts is a graduate from the University of Maryland and the University of Massachusetts. He has been employed by the fire insurance industry and as a fire fighter, Assistant Professor of Fire Protection Engineering at the University of Maryland (USA) and fire investigator. He spent a sabbatical year in 1979-1980 here at the Fire Safety Engineering group at the University of Edinburgh. He also serves as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Fire Technology and co-editor of the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering.

Some Aspects of Fire Risk Analysis

by Dr Jack Watts

What is fire risk analysis? This presentation will identify concepts of risk analysis with specific application to fire safety engineering. While FSE can be considered an adolescent engineering discipline, there is a hundred year history of fire risk assessment. We will look at some of today’s fire risk models that take many forms ranging from simplistic utilitarian to computationally complex. An example of mathematical modeling of fire risk is presented that integrates stochastic elements into the currently popular engineering approach of performance-based fire safety evaluation. Broad conclusions are drawn that relate to a spectrum of engineering disciplines.

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