About fire safety and engineering

The Institute for Fire Safety Engineering Research and Technology (FireSERT), at Ulster University.


FireSERT is nationally and internationally recognised for its excellent research contribution to Fire Safety Engineering and Science as manifested with the award of several prestigious grants from the UK government and other funding agencies. FireSERT offers bespoke design, assessment and protection of materials and fire safety enhancement adhering to strict regulations for the built environment, industry and transport. This effort is supported by advancing fire risk management and investigating the human response for an effective evacuation in fire events.

We aim to:

  • Provide for the delivery of core activities (see mission statement) to the required high quality and standard,
  • Extend and develop the fire safety engineering knowledge base,
  • Disseminate knowledge of fire safety science to the widest possible audience,
  • Develop and deliver higher technical fire safety education and related training programmes,
  • Support industry and commerce,
  • Develop useful partnerships to further mutual interests, and
  • Maintain and sustain FireSERT as a centre of excellence in the field of fire safety science and engineering.

Our research falls into the following main themes:

  • Fire Dynamics and Materials
  • Structures and Protections in Fire
  • Human Behaviour and Fire Risk Analysis
  • CFD Modelling and Finite element Analysis

Our Impact

The “state of the art” infrastructure and equipment at FireSERT is making a major contribution to the study of how fires develop, how structures respond to fire, how people react to fire and how to model fire and fire related phenomena including building evacuation. The research at FireSERT produced cost effective performance-based buildings without compromising safety, to assist with the development and utilisation of new constructional fire safety components whilst providing independent views on fire safety regulatory issues to government and other bodies.

FireSERT researchers play active roles both nationally and internationally through extensive links and collaborations with other leading researchers from all over the world including the USA, Europe, Australia, Middle East and the Far East.  We are member of the International Association of Fire Safety and Science serving the board committee, Structures in Fire, Structural Safety Under fire & Blast Loading in the international Advisory Committee. Working with Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service to assist them in development of programmes and evaluation.

FireSERT has got close collaborations with industry through FP7/H2020/Coal& Steel projects and local government grants. Particularly, worked with several companies in intumescent coatings to improve the fire resistance of their products and maintaining the structure stability during the building evacuations. Improving the regulations by implementing the travelling fire in compartmentation in the Eurocode design. FireSERT is developing highly insulating energy efficient components as well as associated enabling materials for cost-effective retrofitting and new construction of curtain wall facades.