Tools quantifying the impact of fire events have been developed separately as each of the following phenomena has required its own extensive research:
- fire effects,
- evacuation of building occupants,
- response of the building structures.
Fire effects tools gather:
- algebraic equation sets, dedicated to the specifics of the fire phenomena such as the temperature on the centerline of a fire plume, temperature profiles in the ceiling jet, time before flashover in a room, activation time of a heat detector.
- fire zone models, which usually divide an orthogonal space into two control volumes (i.e. a lower zone and an upper zone) where the temperature and the species concentrations are considered homogeneous. Additional zones may be considered like a plume or a ciling jet.
- Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) fire models, which divide complex geometries in a large number of control volumes where usually a set of governing equations for conservation of energy, total mass, momentum and chemical species.
Evacuation tools gather :
- movement models based on algebraic equation sets that describes the movement of people with hydraulic models,
- partial behavioral models,
- behavioral models,
- behavioral models with risk assessment capabilities,
- behavioral models with artificial intelligence capabilities.
Structural response tools gather:
- algebraic equation sets, which were established for the design of fire resistance of structures ,
- 2D or 3D models, which calculate the evolution of the temperature in the structural elements in a fire introduced as the evolution of the gas temperature or a net flux on the surface of the structure.
 Erica D. Kuligowski, Computer Evacuation Models for Buildings, Section 3, Chapter 17 of the 4th edition of the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Society of Fire Protection Engineering, National Fire Protection Association, 2008  Ulf Wickstrom, Methods for Predicting Temperatures in Fire-Exposed Structures, Section 4, Chapter 9 of the 4th edition of the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering, Society of Fire Protection Engineering, National Fire Protection Association, 2008
Alberto Alvarez - WPI (2012-10-05)