Migoya Valor, Emilio and García García, Javier and Crespo Martínez, Antonio and Gago, Constantino and Rubio, Almudena
Determination of the heat release rate inside operational road tunnels by comparison with CFD calculations.
"Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology", v. 26
Usually, during a fire inside a tunnel, the average heat release rate (HRR) is estimated according to the type of vehicle. Frequently, the overall HRR is considered, however it is also necessary to know its time evolution to design real time systems, particularly ventilation, which respond to fire events or signals as fast as possible. Nowadays, there is not a well established and generally accepted procedure to know the power liberated at each instant of time inside an operational tunnel. That procedure could help in taking the correct actions to adapt the tunnel ventilation in order to diminish the effects of the fire and the smoke. This work shows a method to calculate the heat release rate using sensors that can be installed inside an operational road tunnel. Besides, the location of the fire could also be calculated accurately and quickly. To achieve the previous purposes, a stationary database that depends on HRR, its location, and the ventilation speed is calculated with CFD programs; the data are compared with temperatures measured by the sensors located inside the tunnel. The program used to generate the database is the simplified model UPMTUNNEL. The predictions of the model are compared with the results of calculations carried out using the general purpose code FLUENT, and with measurements done in a tunnel with a real fire, produced with a fuel tray.