UL and IIT Gandhinagar Collaborate to Create India’s First Glass Façade Testing Project

Fire research conducted on Glass building exteriors to study and evolve appropriate fire safety mechanisms in India

Bangalore, December 8, 2016 — UL, a global safety science organization, today announces its collaboration with one of India’s premier educational institutions, Indian Institute of Technology, Gandhinagar, for an innovative project to study the nature of fires in buildings with glass exteriors. The goal of the study, which includes regulators, manufacturers and stakeholders of the fire and security community, is to emphasize the urgent need for developing performance based codes and to align norms governing fire safety with country-specific standards.

Built environment and infrastructure safety is more important than ever as global economies such as India's continue to experience rapid growth. New building technologies and struggling public safety infrastructure present new challenges and the two organizations are eager to work together toward a safer tomorrow.

The live testing, planned during UL’s 8th Annual Fire Safety Council, will take place at IIT Gandhinagar, Ahmedabad. To replicate a real world scenario, the test building with a glass façade will be equipped with furniture common in contemporary commercial buildings. The fire load will be implemented as per National Building Code specifications. The entire experiment, which will be captured using sophisticated cameras and drones will simulate, measure, record and provide invaluable data on the spread of fire within the building.

Commenting on this novel endeavor, Suresh Sugavanam, UL’s Managing Director of South Asia said, “Developing standards and evolving newer methods to combat fire hazards has been a core focus of our company, shaping our legacy as the global leaders in fire safety. As increasing urbanization and changing architectural trends add innumerable buildings and skyscrapers with glass facades to our city skylines, it becomes imperative to understand the challenges posed by such infrastructure on the health and safety of its occupants and of those who protect them .Our intention, with this study, is to initiate a dialogue on the need for evolving India specific fire safety standards that address the dangers posed by modern constructions.”

IITGN Director, Prof. Sudhir K Jain said, "Considering the frequency and severity of fires disasters in our country, a lot of work needs to be done in fire engineering. This facility will play a vital role in addressing this need. IIT Gandhinagar is committed to work on problems of relevance to the country so as to make a meaningful impact. This research project is a good example of the same."

Test data is planned to be available on February 1, 2017 at  www.india.ul.com.

About UL

UL is a premier global independent safety science company that has championed progress for 120 years. Its more than 10,000 professionals are guided by the UL mission to promote safe working and living environments for all people. UL uses research and standards to continually advance and meet ever-evolving safety needs. We partner with businesses, manufacturers, trade associations and international regulatory authorities to bring solutions to a more complex global supply chain. For more information about our certification, testing, inspection, advisory and education services, visit http://www.UL.com.