Metro State University Fire Dynamics
Metro State University Denver, held their final “Fire Dynamics” class on March 31, 2018 at the Iris Fire Investigations in Englewood Metropolitan State University of Denver. This Fire Dynamics class was the final class for the semester and was taught by Mark Campbell, Denver Fire Department, and Kevin Hammonds, Metro State University Denver. The class of students built and burned a Reduced Scale Enclosure (RSE) to study “Enclosure Fire Dynamics”, bringing all the semesters work together. A variety of items including light bulbs, glass, and scaled furniture were used inside the enclosure to demonstrate how they respond to fire. By using video cameras and thermocouples, the students were able to see all phases of a room and contents fire, including the fire growth, spread, rollover, transition through flashover, and full room involvement. After the fire was out, the students observed various forms of evidence including the match that started the fire, light bulb filament, glass fractures (conchoidal fracture lines) and various burn patterns. All these items were discussed from a forensic science and investigation perspective and the importance of fire fighters preserving this evidence on the fire ground. The RSE used in these classes is an engineering tool, calculated and designed according to the required scaling laws and represent the Enclosure Fire Dynamics of a full-size room and contents fire. These RSE are currently used in the following classes: Fire Dynamics, Applications in Fire Research, Fire Protection Systems and Structures, and Fire Investigations as a hands-on training tool.