Imperial College London

ProfessorGuillermoRein

Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Mechanical Engineering

Professor of Fire Science
 
 
 
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Contact

 

+44 (0)20 7594 7036g.rein Website CV

 
 
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Assistant

 

Ms Eniko Jarecsni +44 (0)20 7594 7029

 
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Location

 

614City and Guilds BuildingSouth Kensington Campus

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Summary

 

Publications

Publication Type
Year
to

219 results found

Purnomo DMJ, Christensen EG, Fernandez-Anez N, Rein Get al., 2024, BARA: cellular automata simulation of multidimensional smouldering in peat with horizontally varying moisture contents, International Journal of Wildland Fire, Vol: 33, ISSN: 1049-8001

<jats:p>Background Smouldering peatland wildfires can last for months and create a positive feedback for climate change. These flameless, slow-burning fires spread horizontally and vertically and are strongly influenced by peat moisture content. Most models neglect the non-uniform nature of peat moisture. Aims We conducted a computational study into the spread behaviour of smouldering peat with horizontally varying moisture contents. Methods We developed a discrete cellular automaton model called BARA, and calibrated it against laboratory experiments. Key results BARA demonstrated high accuracy in predicting fire spread under non-uniform moisture conditions, with &gt;80% similarity between observed and predicted shapes, and captured complex phenomena. BARA simulated 1 h of peat smouldering in 3 min, showing its potential for field-scale modelling. Conclusion Our findings demonstrate: (i) the critical role of moisture distribution in determining smouldering behaviour; (ii) incorporating peat moisture distribution into BARA’s simple rules achieved reliable predictions of smouldering spread; (iii) given its high accuracy and low computational requirement, BARA can be upscaled to field applications. Implications BARA contributes to our understanding of peatland wildfires and their underlying drivers. BARA could form part of an early fire warning system for peatland.</jats:p>

Journal article

Santoso MA, Christensen EG, Rein G, 2023, The effects of pulsating wind on the transition from smouldering to flaming combustion, Fire Safety Journal, Vol: 141, ISSN: 0379-7112

Smouldering and flaming of solid fuels both originate after the pyrolysis reaction, and fires often transition between the two types of combustion. Smouldering-to-flaming (StF) transition introduces a sudden increase of the fire hazard in terms of temperature, spread rate, and power. The literature has studied the effect of wind on StF but only with continuous wind. Here, we show for the first time the influence of pulsating wind by studying the StF transition on wood samples that have been ignited and where smouldering is spreading. The time to StF transition with pulsating wind takes place, on average, ∼39% earlier than continuous wind, and it is highly repeatable, which is unusual for the previous literature. Pulsating wind enhances the transition by temporarily eliminating the cooling and dilution effects of the wind. This study contributes to the fundamental understanding of StF transition for pulsating wind that often occurs in real conditions but had not been studied before.

Journal article

Cui W, Dossi S, Rein G, 2023, Laboratory benchmark of low-cost portable gas and particle analysers at the source of smouldering wildfires, International Journal of Wildland Fire, Vol: 32, Pages: 1542-1557, ISSN: 1049-8001

Background. Smouldering wildfires emit large amounts of carbon, toxic gases and particulate matter (PM), posing health and environmental hazards. It is challenging to conduct field measurements on wildfire emissions, and available instruments are limited by high cost and low mobility. Aim. Here, we contribute to solving this challenge by studying three commercial low-cost and portable air quality analysers (KANE101, SDS011 and FLOW) and comparing them with research-grade instruments (FTIR, PM Cascade Impactor and DustTrak). Methods. A series of laboratory experiments on peat smouldering were conducted including the stages of ignition, spread and burnout to provide conditions of emission measurements near the source. Key results. The gas analyser KANE101 accurately measured CO2 and allowed calculation of modified combustion efficiency (MCE). The FLOW air pollution sensor was found unsuitable for PM measurements near fire sources because of its narrow range. FLOW captured the variation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), but measurements did not correlate well with NO2 measurements. The SDS011 PM sensor responded well in measuring PM10 in this study. Conclusions. KANE101 and SDS011 can be used in the field after calibration to measure CO2/CO and PM. Implications. This work provides a better understanding of how low-cost and portable emission sensors can be of use for wildfire measurements in the field.

Journal article

Lugaresi F, Sedlak B, Kotsovinos P, Rein Get al., 2023, Thermal response of a curtain wall framing system under fire conditions, FIRE SAFETY JOURNAL, Vol: 140, ISSN: 0379-7112

Journal article

Mitchell H, Amin R, Heidari M, Kotsovinos P, Rein Get al., 2023, Structural hazards of smouldering fires in timber buildings, FIRE SAFETY JOURNAL, Vol: 140, ISSN: 0379-7112

Journal article

Bonner M, Caracci L, Rein G, 2023, Examining the fire risk in London dwellings using the London Fire Brigade Incident database, FIRE AND MATERIALS, ISSN: 0308-0501

Journal article

Yuan H, Purnomo DMJ, Sun P, Huang X, Rein Get al., 2023, Computational study of the multidimensional spread of smouldering combustion at different peat conditions, FUEL, Vol: 345, ISSN: 0016-2361

Journal article

Kotsovinos P, Christensen EG, Rackauskaite E, Glew A, O'Loughlin E, Mitchell H, Amin R, Robert F, Heidari M, Barber D, Rein G, Schulz Jet al., 2023, Impact of ventilation on the fire dynamics of an open-plan compartment with exposed timber ceiling and columns: CodeRed #02, Fire and Materials: an international journal, Vol: 47, Pages: 569-596, ISSN: 0308-0501

The desire by developers and architects to build mass timber buildings using cross laminated timber (CLT) and glulam has significantly increased globally in the last decade due to its benefits with regards to sustainability as well as other architectural and commercial drivers. This paper presents novel experimental evidence from CodeRed #02, the second in a series of large scale fire experiments carried out inside a purpose-built, open-plan compartment to capture fire dynamics in large compartments with exposed timber. The experiment used a continuous wood crib (6 × 29 m) as a controlled movable fuel load. The aim of the CodeRed #02 experiment was to study the impact of reduced ventilation on fire dynamics by keeping all other parameters the same as CodeRed #01 (Kotsovinos et al., 2022), with the exception of ventilation area which was reduced by almost half. The reduction in ventilation was found to significantly impact the fire dynamics by slowing the fire spread and burning rate. The reduced ventilation led to an increased fire duration by 4 min 30 s, which corresponds to 20% longer duration compared to CodeRed #01. The reduced ventilation had a greater overall impact on the rate of flame spread across the CLT (−23%) than the crib (−8%) compared to CodeRed #01. While the maximum temperature and incident heat fluxes inside the compartment were approximately the same as in CodeRed #01, their evolution in time and space were significantly different. The external flames were higher than in CodeRed #01 (3–3.5 m compared to 2.5–3 m) and protruded further laterally (up to ~4–5 m compared to ~1 m) outside of the compartment from the large end openings. Unlike CodeRed #01, the external flaming from CodeRed #02 pulsated between visible flames and dark soot with significantly greater frequency. This was caused by the limited ventilation resulting in incomplete combustion in CodeRed #02. The peak heat release rate of CodeRed #02 w

Journal article

Kotsovinos P, Rackauskaite E, Christensen E, Glew A, O'Loughlin E, Mitchell H, Amin R, Robert F, Heidari M, Barber D, Rein G, Schulz Jet al., 2023, Fire dynamics inside a large and open-plan compartment with exposed timber ceiling and columns: CodeRed #01, Fire and Materials: an international journal, Vol: 47, Pages: 542-568, ISSN: 0308-0501

There is an increasing global demand to build from timber as it is a sustainable and attractive material. One of the key challenges associated with timber buildings is their performance in a fire, in particular, for medium- and high-rise buildings and when timber is exposed. Research on this topic to date has been performed in compartments smaller than 84 m2 which does not capture the fire dynamics of large compartments. This paper presents the first in a series of experiments carried out inside a large, purpose-built, open-plan compartment with a floor area of 352 m2. The large-scale compartment had a fully exposed, unloaded, cross-laminated timber (CLT) ceiling and glued laminated timber (glulam) columns, made with adhesives that have been tested to not exhibit char fall-off in fire. At 352 m2 floor area, this is currently the largest compartment fire experiment carried out globally. The compartment characteristics and the arrangement of the wood crib mimicked the previous series of experiments in Poland in a non-combustible compartment by Rackauskaite et al. (2021). The experiment was instrumented with thermocouples measuring the gas temperature in the compartment, and above two of the openings, as well as the temperature within the timber members. Plate thermometers were also included to measure the heat flux to the ceiling and of the external flaming. Additionally, fixed and drone-mounted cameras captured the fire. A protected steel column was added to calculate the equivalent fire exposure when compared to a standard fire resistance furnace test. The experiment was allowed to burn out without fire-fighting intervention. Continuous measurements were taken for 48 h. The wood crib was ignited at one end of the compartment. Flames rapidly spread across the timber ceiling to the other end of the compartment with the rest of the wood crib being involved in the fire at 5 min 36 s from ignition. The total duration of the fire was 22 

Journal article

Mitchell H, Kotsovinos P, Richter F, Thomson D, Barber D, Rein Get al., 2023, Review of fire experiments in mass timber compartments: Current understanding, limitations, and research gaps, FIRE AND MATERIALS, Vol: 47, Pages: 415-432, ISSN: 0308-0501

Journal article

Ronchi E, Wahlqvist J, Ardinge A, Rohaert A, Gwynne SMV, Rein G, Mitchell H, Kalogeropoulos N, Kinateder M, Benichou N, Kuligowski E, Kimball Aet al., 2023, The verification of wildland-urban interface fire evacuation models, NATURAL HAZARDS, Vol: 117, Pages: 1493-1519, ISSN: 0921-030X

Journal article

Kotsovinos P, Christensen EG, Glew A, O'Loughlin E, Mitchell H, Amin R, Robert F, Heidari M, Barber D, Rein G, Schulz Jet al., 2023, Impact of partial encapsulation on the fire dynamics of an open-plan compartment with exposed timber ceiling and columns: CodeRed #04, FIRE AND MATERIALS, Vol: 47, Pages: 597-626, ISSN: 0308-0501

Journal article

Hu Z, He X, Restuccia F, Rein Get al., 2023, Benchmarking Between COMSOL and GPYRO in Predicting Self-Heating Ignition of Lithium-Ion Batteries, FIRE TECHNOLOGY, Vol: 59, Pages: 1319-1339, ISSN: 0015-2684

Journal article

Gwynne SMV, Ronchi E, Wahlqvist J, Cuesta A, Gonzalez Villa J, Kuligowski ED, Kimball A, Rein G, Kinateder M, Benichou N, Xie Het al., 2023, Roxborough Park Community Wildfire Evacuation Drill: Data Collection and Model Benchmarking, FIRE TECHNOLOGY, ISSN: 0015-2684

Journal article

Lovreglio R, Wang X, Rein G, 2023, The UN Sustainable Development Goals and Fire Technology, Fire Technology, ISSN: 0015-2684

Journal article

Bonner M, Wegrzynski W, Rein G, 2023, Visual Fire Power: An Algorithm for Measuring Heat Release Rate of Visible Flames in Camera Footage, with Applications in Facade Fire Experiments, FIRE TECHNOLOGY, Vol: 59, Pages: 191-215, ISSN: 0015-2684

Journal article

Mitchell H, Gwynne S, Ronchi E, Kalogeropoulos N, Rein Get al., 2023, Integrating wildfire spread and evacuation times to design safe triggers: Application to two rural communities using PERIL model, SAFETY SCIENCE, Vol: 157, ISSN: 0925-7535

Journal article

Purnomo DMJ, Apers S, Bechtold M, Sofan P, Rein Get al., 2023, KAPAS II: simulation of peatland wildfires with daily variations of peat moisture content, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol: 32, Pages: 823-835, ISSN: 1049-8001

Journal article

Cui W, Hu Y, Rein G, 2023, Experimental study of the ignition conditions for self-sustained smouldering in peat, PROCEEDINGS OF THE COMBUSTION INSTITUTE, Vol: 39, Pages: 4125-4133, ISSN: 1540-7489

Journal article

Zhang X, Hu L, Zhang X, Sun X, Rein Get al., 2023, Two dimensional temperature distributions in a ceiling jet generated by a finite line-source fire: An experimental study, PROCEEDINGS OF THE COMBUSTION INSTITUTE, Vol: 39, Pages: 4145-4154, ISSN: 1540-7489

Journal article

Dossi S, Messerschmidt B, Ribeiro LM, Almeida M, Rein Get al., 2023, Relationships between building features and wildfire damage in California, USA and Pedrogao Grande, Portugal, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol: 32, Pages: 296-312, ISSN: 1049-8001

Journal article

Lugaresi F, Kotsovinos P, Lenk P, Rein Get al., 2022, Review of the mechanical failure of non-combustible facade systems in fire, CONSTRUCTION AND BUILDING MATERIALS, Vol: 361, ISSN: 0950-0618

Journal article

Kuligowski E, Ronchi E, Wahlqvist J, Gwynne SM, Kinateder M, Rein G, Mitchell H, Benichou N, Kimball Aet al., 2022, Evacuation modelling for bushfire: the WUI-NITY simulation platform, AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT, Vol: 37, Pages: 40-43, ISSN: 1324-1540

Journal article

Ang CD, Peiro J, Riess I, Rein Get al., 2022, Analysis of fire throttling in longitudinally ventilated tunnels with a one-dimensional model, Fire Technology, Vol: 58, Pages: 2925-2947, ISSN: 0015-2684

Fire throttling is the increase in flow resistance due to a large fire in a longitudinally ventilated tunnel. Although the fire throttling effect has been been known and studied for tunnels over the last 40 years, there is not yet a consistent one-dimensional (1D) model that can describe this behaviour or a framework suitable for practical application. We propose a semi-empirical model, based upon pipe flow engineering principles, to describe this effect by separating the resistance to flow, or pressure loses in three parts: upstream of the fire, locally at the fire, and downstream of the fire. The proposed 1D model called TE1D is derived from a simple steady one-dimensional momentum balance in which a semi-empirical mean temperature distribution is assumed across the tunnel. We verify the model by comparing the pressures losses it predicts with those calculated in CFD simulations based on OpenFOAM and Fire Dynamics Simulator. The comparison shows good agreement between the CFD codes for the range of fires sizes considered from 5 to 50 MW and good agreement between TE1D and the CFD results with the proposed 1D model for fire sizes below 30 MW. However, for values above there are large discrepancies between the results obtained by the TE1D and CFD. We posit as a potential explanation that these differences are due to flow and temperature stratification which is not accounted for in the 1D model. The model using pipe flow principles allows engineers to adopt this model for design, together with other pressure losses considered in tunnel ventilation.

Journal article

He X, Hu Z, Restuccia F, Fang J, Rein Get al., 2022, Experimental study of the effect of the state of charge on self-heating ignition of large ensembles of lithium-ion batteries in storage, Applied Thermal Engineering, Vol: 212, Pages: 1-11, ISSN: 1359-4311

Self-heating can cause the ignition of open-circuit Lithium-ion batteries. Current safety literature focuses on the self-heating chemistry of a single cell, ignoring the effects of heat transfer. However, a large ensemble of batteries has a non-uniform temperature distribution and therefore self-heating ignition is dominated by both heat transfer and chemistry. This type of ignition is of importance when batteries are stored for long periods of time and in large ensembles but has been rarely studied to date. This paper studies the effect of the state of charge (SOC) on the self-heating behavior of LiCoO2 prismatic cells. The SOC of 0% (of interest in the safety of waste facilities), 30% (transport), 50% (storage), 80% (aged battery) and 100% (fully-charged battery), and 1, 2 and 4 cells stacked together were studied using oven experiments. Results show that cells at all SOC can self-ignite. Flames were only observed for SOC larger than 80%. We compare two temperature criteria: the temperature of the middle cell using the critical increase rate of 10 ℃/min defined in standard SAE-J2464, and the ambient temperature around the ensemble when triggering ignition. Both temperature criteria decrease with increasing SOC showing that the hazard grows with energy density. The cell temperature criterion is independent of the number of cells, while the ambient temperature criterion decreases as the number of cells increases, which indicates the increased risk of self-heating ignition when cells are stacked together in ensembles. Thus, the ambient temperature criterion should be used to design safe storage rather than the standard cell temperature increase rate, which does not represent well the criticality of ignition. The effective kinetics and thermal properties at different SOCs are extracted based on the Frank-Kamenetskii theory and are used to upscale laboratory results to storage conditions. The results in this work can improve the safety of the storage and provide scient

Journal article

He X, Zhao C, Hu Z, Restuccia F, Richter F, Wang Q, Rein Get al., 2022, Heat transfer effects on accelerating rate calorimetry of the thermal runaway of Lithium-ion batteries, Process Safety and Environmental Protection, Vol: 162, Pages: 684-693, ISSN: 0263-8762

The thermal runaway of Lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) is a fire hazard. The Accelerating Rate Calorimetry (ARC) device is commonly used to investigate thermal runaway parameters of LIBs by assuming adiabatic conditions. However, this assumption ignores internal heat transfer within the cell and external heat transfer at the cell surface. In this work, we conducted ARC experiments using prismatic LiCoO2 cells of 50 mm in side to study the effect of heat transfer limitations. Results show that the external temperature difference between this cell surface and ARC walls varies between 0 and 1.5 ℃ before thermal runaway and increases from 10 to 130 ℃ while thermal runaway occurs. Ignoring external heat transfer causes the heat of reaction of the cell to be underestimated by 12%. To study the internal heat transfer, two models are developed and show that heat transfer causes an internal temperature difference that causes an error of kinetics estimation, and the error grows with cell size. Ignoring heat transfer leads to errors on the thermal runaway parameters quantified by ARC, and these errors could propagate to battery safety design and predictions. This study contributes to designing better ARC experiments and a better understanding of battery safety.

Journal article

Rackauskaite E, Bonner M, Restuccia F, Anez NF, Christensen EG, Roenner N, Wegrzynski W, Turkowski P, Tofilo P, Heidari M, Kotsovinos P, Vermesi I, Richter F, Hu Y, Jeanneret C, Wadhwani R, Rein Get al., 2022, Fire Experiment Inside a Very Large and Open-Plan Compartment: x-ONE, FIRE TECHNOLOGY, Vol: 58, Pages: 905-939, ISSN: 0015-2684

Journal article

Wang Z, Liu N, Yuan H, Chen H, Xie X, Zhang L, Rein Get al., 2022, Smouldering and its transition to flaming combustion of polyurethane foam: An experimental study, FUEL, Vol: 309, ISSN: 0016-2361

Journal article

Jahn W, Urban JL, Rein G, 2022, Powerlines and wildfires: overview, perspectives, and climate change: could there be more electricity blackouts in the future?, IEEE Power and Energy Magazine, Vol: 20, Pages: 16-27, ISSN: 1540-7977

Overhead powerlines cross extensive areas of forest and grasslands, and these areas are often flammable and can burn. Wildfire is a natural phenomenon important to many ecosystems around the globe, but also capable of considerable damage to people and communities. As a result of human activity in natural spaces, people have altered wildfire regimes over time, and wildfires have become a threat to people, to their property, and infrastructure. For example, Figure 1 shows the thousands of wildfires detected by satellite around the globe during seven days of early September 2021; the image gives an indication of the planetary magnitude of the phenomenon. Powerlines represent both a way in which human activity has changed the natural wildfire regimes (i.e., an ignition source), and vital infrastructure vulnerable to fire.

Journal article

Santoso MA, Christensen EG, Amin HMF, Palamba P, Hu Y, Purnomo DMJ, Cui W, Pamitran A, Richter F, Smith TEL, Nugroho YS, Rein Get al., 2022, GAMBUT field experiment of peatland wildfires in Sumatra: from ignition to spread and suppression, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF WILDLAND FIRE, Vol: 31, Pages: 949-966, ISSN: 1049-8001

Journal article

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