Recently, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has announced the results of the competition for “Excellent PhD Thesis Award of CAS” and “Excellent Supervision Award of CAS”. A total of 100 theses and 143 supervisors were awarded, including our graduate Dr Yu Wang with his thesis “Experimental and Numerical Study of Glass Façade Breakage Behavior Under Fire Conditions”. Dr Wang was awarded the “Excellent PhD Thesis Award of CAS” and his supervisor Prof Jinhua Sun was presented the “Excellent Supervision Award of CAS”. Congratulations!
Yu joined our lab for his PhD from 2013 under the supervision of Prof Jinhua Sun and Prof Qingsong Wang, working on the experimental and computational studies concerning the micro mechanism of glass thermal breakage and the fallout prediction of glass façade in a fire. A series of innovative and significant findings were obtained:
Findings for simple window glass are difficult to apply to high-rise building façades since many different types of glass and support systems are utilized in practice. Dr Wang with his colleagues developed flexible finite element software to address those many different types of glass and frame systems. With his EASY-CRACK program, the dynamic thermal stress distribution can be calculated for a wide variety of geometries and glass properties. The crack spread rate and crack direction are calculated based on the first principles of fracture mechanics. A moving crack-tip mesh topology is utilized to locally refine the grid resolution in the tip region. The criteria for cracking was comprehensively compared and successfully applied.
In addition to his analytical and numerical work, he also conducted experiments on full-scale frame and point-supported glass facades with single, double and coated glazing under simulated real fire conditions. These experiments provided useful practical data and also were used to challenge the predictive capabilities of his software, which was found to provide accurate breakage prediction.
Dr Wang also conducted sensitivity analyses which facilitate and promote the fire risk assessment of glass facades. His experiments and analyses provide theoretical and practical bases for the fire safety optimization of glass design. His software methods could be applied in a variety of industrial applications and assist in the development of future fire safety guidelines and standards.
Fig. 1. The comparison of experimental and numerical results of frame and point supported glass façades.
Fig. 2. The stochastic characteristics of cracking in different types of glazing.
Relevant results have been published in more than 20 SCI journal papers, and 1 Patent for Invention has been granted. In particular, more than 10 papers were published in the leading journals in fire safety and structural engineering, including Fire Safety Journal, Construction and Building Material and Materials and Structures. The achievements have helped Yu to obtain a high reputation in the glass in fire area from the relevant researchers from USA, UK, Singapore, Republic of Korea and Italy to name a few. In addition, during Yu’s PhD study, he obtained the President Award of CAS, USA Committee 100 Leadership Scholarship (only 28 graduates in China got this award) and National Scholarship amongst others.