Constructal design of pedestrian evacuation from an area

Che Heng Gigi Lui, Nai Kong Fong, S. Lorente, A. Bejan, Wan Ki Chow

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Pedestrian movement occurs in evolutionary patterns the effect of which is to facilitate the access of people into and out of living spaces (areas, volumes). In this paper, we rely on the philosophy of Constructal design as applied physics, in order to uncover two fundamental features of evolutionary design for pedestrian evacuation from rectangular areas (e.g., lecture halls with seated occupants). First, the paper shows analytically that the aspect ratio of the floor area can be selected such that the total evacuation time is minimal. Second, the shape of the floor area of each aisle can be tapered such that the total evacuation time is decreased further. These two architectural features are confirmed by means of extensive and systematic numerical simulations of pedestrian evacuation, by using two numerical packages (Simulex and FDS + Evac).
Original languageEnglish
Article number034904
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jan 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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