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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse,


France

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

An assembly plant was constructed for the World's largest aircraft, the Airbus A380. The
plant includes of seven long-span steel framed buildings. The buildings were designed
using various fire scenarios, including fire in an aircraft, and these scenarios demonstrated
acceptable fire safety.

Airbus A380 Assembly Plant


(Photograph E. Grimault)

Contents
1.

The Achievement

2.

Introduction

3.

Structure

4.

Fire Safety study

5.

General information

6.

References

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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

1.

The Achievement

The achievement of this major production facility in Toulouse, currently one of the largest
projects in France, concerned the following:
Construction of seven long-span production halls for the Airbus A380, which is the
largest aircraft in the world.
The construction of lattice trusses with a curved top chord and large lattice columns.
Stability is provided by a rigid truss-frame action.
Various fire scenarios were investigated, from fire in a delivery truck to fire in an aircraft
full of fuel, in order to develop a fire safety model.
Progressive collapse scenarios were investigated and it was shown that major failure of
one part of the structure would not extend to other parts.

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

2.

Introduction

The assembly plant of Airbus A380, the future largest passenger aircraft in the world,
occupies an area of 300 hectares. It is also one of the most important industrial projects in
progress in France. In July 2006, the first aircraft A380 assembled in this plant will be
delivered. This required the construction of long span structures capable of accommodating
such a large aircraft in assembly.

3.

Structure

The buildings of the plant assembly are arranged along a north-south axis corresponding to
the assembly route of an aircraft A380, from the delivery of its sections in the north of the site
until haulage of the completed aircraft toward the airport zone. The overall site plan is shown
diagrammatically in Figure 3.1.
Once the sections have been transported to the site, they are unloaded in one building in the
north part of the site and then moved to a building called an apse for preparation prior to
assembly. The aircraft is assembled in the assembly hall, and then brought to the
equipment halls for additional equipment installation (hydraulic and electric equipment), for
some specific tests and for the installation of motors. Finally, the aircraft is moved to an
external area where it will be subjected to the final tests before its first flight. An independent
and separate static testing hall is provided in order to perform static testing for attestation of
the A380. A second hall of similar size, 40 m away from the static testing hall, is used for
finishing activities, weighing and recoating of the aircraft.

Page 2

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

Key:
a Static testing
b Weighing and recoating hall
c Equipment halls

Figure 3.1

d Assembly halls
e Apse
f Hall for unloading of sections

g Logistics shop
h External area for tests and
delivery

Steel frames of the assembly plant of Airbus A380


(Copyright photo by permission of EADS Airbus)

The main characteristics of these buildings are:


Hall for unloading of sections: floor area 44 m 135 m, internal net height 14 m,
maximum outside height 16 m;
Logistics shop: floor area 85 m 70 m, internal net height 10 m, maximum outside
height 14 m;
Apse building, for assembly preparation: floor area 50 m 250 m, internal net height
20 m, maximum outside height 23 m;
Assembly hall: floor area 115 m 250 m, internal net height 32,30 m, maximum
outside height 46 m;
Equipment hall: floor area 6 cells of 95 m 100 m, internal net height 32,30 m,
maximum outside height 44 m;
Static testing hall: floor area 100 m 100 m, internal net height 32,30 m, maximum
outside height 44 m.
Weighing and recoating hall: floor area 100 m 100 m, internal net height 32,30 m,
maximum outside height 44 m.
All these buildings were constructed as long span steel structures. In most cases, their lateral
stability of is provided by a bracing system using a truss frame. The steel structure is
illustrated in Figure 3.2.
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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

a) External view during construction

b) Internal view

Figure 3.2

Assembly hall
(Copyright photo by permission of EADS Airbus)

4.

Fire Safety study

The normal fire safety requirements are not applicable to such type of major project and
production facility. As a consequence, an important discussion was necessary with the fire
brigade and insurance company to identify appropriate strategies and solutions and gain
experience from similar works. It was decided to use a fire partition wall between assembly
hall and the equipment halls in order to limit the potential loss in case of a severe fire. The
question arises about the possible progressive collapse of adjacent buildings due to the failure
of one of them in case of fire.

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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

In order to provide an answer to above question, a fire safety study was made by CTICM on
the basis of natural fire concept, using the following three fire scenarios:
Fire in a delivery truck near a critical column;
Fire of aircraft without fuel and various working tools;
Fire of an aircraft full of fuel.
The structural model used for the fire safety assessment is shown in Figure 4.1.

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

A global structural analysis was applied. This showed that the collapse of columns could
create a dynamic impact of a steel truss beam on a concrete partition wall, leading to its
damage. As a consequence, the intensity of sprinklers around the columns was increased, to
avoid such a potential failure mode.

Figure 4.1

5.

Equipment halls - Applied modelling in global structural analysis and fire safety
engineering

General information

Client: EADS - AIRBUS France


Architect: ADPi and CARDETTE et HUET
Planning of structural framework: Jaillet-Rouby
Executive company:
- URSSA (Spain)
- CIMOLAI (Italy)
- CASTEL et FROMAGET
- JOSEPH PARIS
- RICHARD DUCROS
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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

BUICK
GAGNE
RENAUDAT

Fire protection expertise: CTICM and others.


Construction period: 2000 2004
Main parameters: Common building span 100 m
Average building height 45 m
Ground-plan: 200 000 m

6.

References

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

CTICM Revue Construction Mtallique N1 2004, Usine dassemblage de lAirbus A380


sur le site aro-constellation toulouse.

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Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France


SP014a-EN-EU

Quality Record
RESOURCE TITLE

Case Study: Fire engineering of Airbus halls, Toulouse, France

Reference(s)
ORIGINAL DOCUMENT
Name

Company

Date

Created by

Bin Zhao

CTICM

2003

Technical content checked by

Haller Mike

PARE

08/11/05

Editorial content checked by

Brasseur Marc

PARE

08/11/05

1. UK

G W Owens

SCI

20/1/06

2. France

A Bureau

CTICM

20/1/06

3. Sweden

A Olsson

SBI

20/1/06

4. Germany

C Mller

RWTH

20/1/06

5. Spain

J Chica

Labein

20/1/06

6. Luxembourg

M Haller

PARE

20/1/06

G W Owens

SCI

13/7/06

Created on Monday, January 22, 2007


This material is copyright - all rights reserved. Use of this document is subject to the terms and conditions of the Access Steel Licence Agreement

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