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Charring Rate and Charring Depth (18-06-04)

The charring rate is more or less constant and mainly depends on the wood properties of density and moisture content. It is observed that when timber members are exposed to standard furnace fire, the initial charring rate on a given face of the member decreases to a slower steady rate which continues throughout the fire exposure up to 90 minutes. This rate is dependent on the timber type and its density.

It is worth noting that a large number of the standard fire tests carried out to determine the rates of charring have been conducted on panels subjected to a single face heating in a small furnace, rather on full-scale timber elements subjected to multi-face heating in a normal size furnace (Purkiss 1996).

EN1995-1-2 (2004) provides some simple calculation methods for determining the charring rate and charring depth of various timber sections, including:

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