Architects and Passive Fire Resistance for Buildings


The first and second line of defense to protect life and property in a building are fire detection and suppression. This article analyzes the evolution of fire resistant building materials in conjunction with the building code, provides research resources available to architects and methods to help ensure code compliance. Architects specify thousands of building materials for a single project, and many of these materials will have been tested singularly or in combination for their fire resistance. The tested materials are the building’s passive fire resistance system and form the third and final line of defense in protecting life and property.

Earn 1 LU HSW credit for receiving a passing score on a quiz that follows reading the article. To receive AIA/CES credit, you are required to read the entire article and pass the test.


Course Topics

  • Building Codes and Passive Fire Resistance
  • ASTM E119/UL 263 Test Standards
  • Historical Application
  • Modern Designs – Engineering Judgements – Research Documentation
  • Passive systems as they relate to:
    • Energy Conservation
    • Timber Construction
    • Additive Manufacturing
    • Conclusion

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

  • Summarize the origins of passive fire resistance.
  • Describe fire resistance construction to a code authority.
  • Explain the resources to architects: engineering judgments, research and documentation.
  • Identify the new frontiers in passive fire resistance.

Target Audience

Multiple roles and levels in an organization including but not limited to:

  • Architects
  • Builders

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After the quiz is scored 80% or higher, 1 HSW LU will be credited to your AIA Membership account if it is provided to us. You can also print a Certificate of Completion from your Learning History.

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Time Requirement


Web-Based 1 hour

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