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    Author(s): E. L. Schaffer; C. M. Marx; D. A. Bender; F. E. Woeste
    Source: (Research paper FPL ; 467):16 p. : ill. ; 28 cm.
    Publication Series: Research Paper (RP)
    Station: Forest Products Laboratory
    PDF: View PDF  (628 KB)


    A previous paper presented a reliability-based model to predict the strength of glued-laminated timber beams at both room temperature and during fire exposure. This Monte Carlo simulation procedure generates strength and fire endurance (time-to-failure, TTF) data for glued- laminated beams that allow assessment of mean strength and TTF as well as their variability. This paper reports an effort to validate model predictive capability through an independently fabricated set of 21 glued-laminated beams. Based upon the available data for the model input parameters on lumber strength and stiffness, finger-joint strength, and length of laminating lumber between sequential finger joints, the model of beam strength appears acceptable and possibly slightly conservative. Refinements in the beam strength model allow its use for predicting fire endurance. In this case, the fire endurance is measured by the TTF and is defined as the time the beam will support its design load while subjected to fire. The residual strength of the beam is analytically calculated by removing the char layer, plus a finite thickness of weakened wood, from the beam cross section as fire exposure time increases. Employing the input parameters for values of finger-joint strength and lamination grades of Douglas-fir, the fire endurance TTF was analyzed for a 5.12- by 16.50- inch 11-lamination Douglas Fir2Larch beam (24F-V4) carrying full allowable uniform load (47.7 lb/in.). (Three-sided fire exposure was assumed; however, four-sided exposure can also be accommodated.) A simulated random fabrication and analysis of the TTF under fire exposure for 100 beams was performed. The mean TTF was estimated as 35.2 minutes with a coefficient of variation of 13.7 percent. Lateral torsional buckling was never the cause of failure in any of the simulations. The results compared well (within a 65 pct confidence band) with the observations and predictions for timber beams reported by sources in other countries. A simulation for a single glulam beam test in cooperation with the National Forest Products Association was also conducted which predicted the result exactly.

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    Schaffer, E. L.; Marx, C. M.; Bender, D. A. ; Woeste, F. E. Strength validation and fire endurance of glued-laminated timber beams. (Research paper FPL ; 467):16 p. : ill. ; 28 cm.


    Beams, Wood strength, Models, Reliability, Testing, Laminated wood, Glulam

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