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SBIR Phase I: Integrated Fire Modeling Software

Award Information

National Science Foundation
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2003 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Thunderhead Engineering Consultants, Inc.
403 Poyntz Ave. Manhattan, KS 66502
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: Yes
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2003
Title: SBIR Phase I: Integrated Fire Modeling Software
Agency: NSF
Contract: 0232401
Award Amount: $99,850.00


This SBIR project will develop an integrated fire modeling software package for use in building design and accident analysis. Modeling fires using a rigorous, scientific approach makes it possible to predict the course of an evolving fire and its impact on the building occupants, contents, and structure. The software will help designers implement new fire safety codes and standards that allow the use of Performance-Based design as an alternative to Rule-Based design. Performance-based design and post-accident analysis offer the potential to reduce injury, loss of life, property damage, and the overall cost of constructing and maintaining buildings through advanced technology. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has developed the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS) computer program. FDS is research-oriented software with text-based input that is difficult to use for large-scale commercial applications. This project will integrate the FDS computation engine with an interactive, graphical interface for model setup and visualization, making the power of FDS accessible to a broader fire safety community and facilitating responsible engineering solutions. Potential markets include investigators performing post-accident analyses, architects and fire protection engineers designing the next generation of buildings, and local, state, and national authorities having jurisdiction (fire safety regulators). Applications also exist for wind-driven fire analysis, including tank-farm incidents and wildland fires. In addition to software sales, there is also an opportunity to provide training in performance-based design and analysis.

Principal Investigator:

Daniel Swenson

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

Thunderhead Engineering Consultants, Inc.
1006 Poyntz Ave. Manhattan, KS 66502

Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No