A study on tilted tunnel fire under natural ventilation

Wan Ki Chow, Y. Gao, J. H. Zhao, J. F. Dang, Nadia C.L. Chow

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


Tilted tunnel fire under natural ventilation has been discussed. Smoke movement in a scale tunnel model of length 8 m, width 1.5 m and height 1 m was studied. Air temperature distribution and velocity components along the longitudinal axis at the tunnel opening were measured. Simulations using Computational Fluid Dynamics on smoke movement in the tilted tunnel fire were then carried out. Buoyancy of smoke layer in the tilted tunnel model was deduced by integrating experimental data with simulations results. Smoke velocity distributions in different tilted tunnels were studied numerically. For a horizontal tunnel, the smoke temperature decay rate along the longitudinal direction can be described by an exponential function. For tunnels tilted from 3° to 9°, smoke temperature decayed with different exponential functions on the two sides of the fire. The smoke velocity along the longitudinal axis was not symmetric about the fire source, but with a maximum value located on the leeward side in tunnels tilted at 3-9°. The neutral plane of flow disappeared at the lower opening of the tunnel when the angle was above 9°. Empirical expressions of smoke temperature and velocity decays along the longitudinal axis for a tilted tunnel were also derived.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-57
Number of pages14
JournalFire Safety Journal
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016


  • Numerical simulation
  • Smoke movement
  • Tilted tunnel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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