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Third Party Tools
The links and information below are provided as a convenience to the user community. Anyone who has a tool or training opportunity that can be of benefit to users of FDS is welcome to submit information and links to the webmaster for inclusion in this list. Any mention of computer hardware, software or services here does not constitute endorsement by NIST, nor does it indicate that the products are necessarily those best suited for the intended purpose. The descriptions below were submitted by the third party providers.
FDS Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs)
PyroSim - Thunderhead Engineering
PyroSim is a graphical user interface for the Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS). PyroSim helps you quickly create and manage the details of complex fire models. Key Features: Import 2D/3D CAD and FDS files, MESH management tools, Integrated FDS simulation in Serial, Parallel and Cluster options, HVAC System GUI, Property Libraries, Interactive GUI for Object editing, 3D Modeling Tools, Integrated with Smokeview for Post-processing.
ASPIRE Smoke Detection Simulation - Xtralis
Xtralis AspireSDS provides a Windows based graphical interface for users to set most of the parameters required in FDS modelling, including geometry and environmental conditions, fuel and fire configurations, and various fire detection technologies. Parameters for the FDS simulation can be specified through several tabbed groups: Simulation Setup, Geometry Setup, Materials and Reaction Setup, Device and Control Setup, Output Setup and Advance Setup. AspireSDS also provides a unique data converter for importing Xtralis VESDA and ICAM aspirating smoke detection (ASD) layout and performance parameters into FDS. See this screencast for example usage of this tool.
BlenderFDS - Emanuele Gissi
BlenderFDS is an open source, cross-platform graphical user interface for FDS, which has been developed over the past several months by a group of FDS users. BlenderFDS is a tool that allows for the graphical creation of simple or complex geometry and exports an FDS input file. BlenderFDS is a add-on to the Blender software package, which is a free and open source 3D modeling tool. It is free and open source, was developed in Python, and is available for the Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X platforms. Pre-existing 2D and 3D data of buildings can be imported from many CAD tools into Blender.
CYPE-Building Services - CYPE
CYPE Building Services is a GUI designed for architects and engineers. The software is BIM field orientated (exports and imports IFC, DWG and DXF format files). It designs HVAC systems, carries out an acoustic and thermal analysis (using FEM analysis and exporting to EnergyPlus). It also designs other building services such as lighting, solar power, electricity, etc. The program designs fire protection systems and automatically generates the model to export to FDS. Several fire scenarios can be analyzed to aid in the design of the building. The FDS input file is generated automatically, optimizing each element depending on the cell size and available number of processors. The results output can be seen using Smokeview or CYPE-Building Services with established control points at detectors, sprinklers and evacuation paths, providing information on the activation of each element.
CAD File Conversion Tools
3dsolid2fds - J. Dimyadi (AutoCAD)
3dsolid2fds is a software utility add-on for use in AutoCAD environment to easily and quickly convert the geometry of 3DSOLID objects to the formatted &OBST lines for FDS. Where objects are constructed on separate layers such as walls, doors, furnitures, etc., 3dsolid2fds would pick up the layer name and use it as SURF_ID on each &OBST line. This is handy for later material specification in the FDS input file.
acad2fds - P. Shkleinik (AutoCAD)
Plug-in for AutoCAD to use FDS. Converts geometry and starts calculation. You can install the plugin and it will be integrated into your AutoCAD instance. Via this plugin you can convert your dwg models to .fds files and execute calculation from AutoCAD. After calculation finishes you can view calculation result directly in AutoCAD.
step2fds - W. Jahn
step2fds is a collection of scripts and programs that reads step files, and converts the contained B-splines to FDS input file format.
PROPTI - T. Hehnen, L. Arnold, P. Lauer, A. Vinayak, C. Trettin
Inverse modeling framework, which handles communication between algorithms and simulation models.
FDS MESH Size Calculator - S. Benkorichi
Originally developed by Kris Overholt and now maintained by Salah Benkorichi, this free, online tool allows a user to easily generate a MESH line for input into FDS. It finds the optimal (Poisson-friendly) MESH division numbers and returns a complete mesh line to be pasted into an FDS input file. It works by calculating cell sizes of different resolutions that will accurately resolve your fire simulation based on the total heat release rate.
FDS+Evac tools - R. Lovreglio
In this site you can find different FDS+Evac tools. These tools allow the users to compile FDS code in a simple and fast way and to perform sensitivity analysis.
ParFDS - S. Link
Parametric wrapper code for FDS. A small, open source code base to automate simple parametric studies in FDS using Python.
Mult Mesh - S. Benkorichi
This is a free open source web-based Python tool to generate MULT lines based on a single MESH line.
Video and Image Tools
VideoEncoderGui - VTT, Finland
VideoEncoderGui (later Veg) is a graphical front-end written in Java for two video encoder applications, MEncoder and Windows Media Encoder. It is primarily intended for encoding image sequences produced e.g. with FDS to video files to use in PowerPoint presentations or as standalone video files.
Evacuation Modeling Tools
STEPS - Mott MacDonald
STEPS is a program developed by Mott MacDonald for simulating pedestrian dynamics in a 3D environment under both emergency and normal conditions. To model an evacuation scenario, users select the FDS model to import the geometry and smoke data files, set the population parameters, and run the simulation. FDS Isosurfaces, Slices and 3D smoke can be displayed while the evacuation is underway. Users can also activate the option to alter pedestrian walking speeds based on visibility conditions according to the Jin-Yamada experimental data (or other data specified by the user).
Pathfinder - Thunderhead Engineering
Pathfinder is an agent based emergency egress simulator that includes an integrated user interface and animated 3D results. Pathfinder allows you to evaluate evacuation models more quickly and produce more realistic graphics than with other simulators. Key Features: Import 2D/3D CAD, PyroSim and FDS files, Continuous Movement Mesh, Multiple Simulation Modes (SFPE and Steering), Flexible Exit and Intermediate Movement Goals, Elevators, Stairways, Escalators, Moving Walkways, Ramps, Custom Occupant Populations, Turnstiles and Other Flow Constraints, High-quality 3D Visualization and Powerful Data Evaluation Tools.
FDS2FTMI - Julio Cesar Silva
FDS2FTMI is an automated code to do one-way coupling between FDS and FEM using the Fire-ThermoMechanical Interface (FTMI). This interface model uses the Adiabatic Surface Temperature concept to establish an interface between FDS and FEM codes. The procedure recreates the net heat flux evaluated in FDS, in the FEM environment by transferring Adiabatic Surface Temperature and the convective heat transfer coefficient from FDS results and adopting the wall temperature provided by the FEM code at each time step. This heat flux can be calculated by FEM over the elements faces and applied into each node of the exposed surface. FDS2FTMI is a code created to perform these tasks in an automated way, allowing the simulation of the behavior of entire structures, discretized with shell and/or solid elements, exposed to fire conditions.
FIM, Fire Integral Model - Ilya Karkin
In solving problems of fire safety, it is often necessary to perform a series of calculations with different initial conditions. In such cases using FDS becomes difficult because each calculation requires significant time and computing resources. In practice, this limits the number of scenarios under consideration, which may affect the quality of the study. FIM implements calculation of the dynamics of fire hazards by using a one-zone integral model, using the input file format of FDS. If the the building topology corresponds to the definition of the integral model, the FIM significantly speeds estimation, before launching into a lengthy calculation FDS. There is no need to create a new model of the building in any other format - the program reads the source FDS file, calculates the dynamics of the fire hazards and generates output files similar to FDS, which can be analyzed in programs like Smokeview.
FDS Distance Education Supervised Project - FireModel Inc, Ontario, Canada
The School of Fire Protection at Seneca College has offered a distance education course on FDS since 2003. This was created and run by David McGill, who has since retired from Seneca. The course is still being offered through his consulting business, Firemodel Inc.
The Supervised Project is for fire protection practitioners with an understanding of fire dynamics. The course comprises a number of discrete topics that isolate the features that must be considered when simulating fires with FDS. There are small exercises to illustrate the important feature of each topic. In addition, you will gradually incorporate each feature into a more complicated model of your own choosing. A 6-month license for PyroSim is provided. This is a self-paced non-credit course.
FDS/PyroSim Workshops - Thunderhead Engineering
Thunderhead Engineering offers a 2-day Introduction to FDS/PyroSim Workshop and a 2-day Advanced FDS/PyroSim Workshop. These workshops are offered at various locations throughout the world. These are hands-on workshops combining a mixture of FDS theory and PyroSim practical skills. Participants bring their own laptops and the workshops are limited to ~ 20 participants. The fee includes a 3 month license for PyroSim.
FDS-VIM-Syntax - A. Louie
VIM syntax highlighting for FDS input files. To use
fds.vim, create a runtime directory to store the syntax file.
$ cd ~ $ mkdir .vim $ cd .vim $ mkdir syntax
fds.vim into the
$ cp ~/Downloads/fds.vim ~/.vim/syntax/.
Next, make sure your
.vimrc file has syntax highlighting turned on and that it points to the
$ vi .vimrc syntax on if has("autocmd") au BufNewFile,BufRead *.fds set filetype=fds endif
Log out and log back in to have new setting take effect.
SublimeFDS - R. McDermott
Sublime Text syntax highlighting for FDS input files. This syntax is based on the Sublime Fortran Namelist syntax. The main differences are that namelist groups and parameters must be valid FDS inputs to be highlighted and there is better treatment of comments.
Notepad++ - E. Gissi
Notepad++ syntax highlighting for FDS input files, it is a text editor and source code editor for Microsoft Windows. It aims to be a lightweight and robust editor for a variety of programming and scripting languages. One advantage of Notepad++ over the built-in Windows text editor Notepad, is that Notepad++ supports tabbed editing, which allows working with multiple open files.