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

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, "Consideringthe frequency and severity of fires disasters in our country, a lot of workneeds to be done in fire engineering. This facility will play a vital role inaddressing this need. IIT Gandhinagar is committed to work on problems ofrelevance to the country so as to make a meaningful impact. This researchproject is a good example of the same." 

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

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