Perimeter Fire Barrier (PFB)
Photo Courtesy of Continuing Education Center

Perimeter Fire Barrier (PFB) systems are used to prevent the passage of flame, smoke, and hot gases at the void space (perimeter joint) between the interior surface of the external wall assembly and the adjacent edge of a floor assembly. During a fire in an exterior room of the building, the heated gasses, smoke, and flames within the room naturally rise. An improperly sealed perimeter joint becomes a path for all three to migrate to the floor above, putting the occupants of higher floors at risk.


ASTM E2307 Standard Test Method for Determining Fire Resistance of Perimeter Fire Barriers

Following decades of code requirements for the floor-to-floor fire containment at a curtain wall connection, ASTM E2307 was published as the test method for evaluating the performance of Perimeter Fire Barrier systems and was first adopted by the International Building Code (IBC) in 2006. Section 715.4 of the IBC now requires PFB systems to be used where a fire-resistance-rated floor assembly intersects with a non-fire-rated exterior curtain wall.

Perimeter Fire Barrier (PFB)
Photo Courtesy of Continuing Education Center


PFB Characteristics

ASTM E2307 measures the ability of the PFB system to maintain a seal and prevent fire spread as the exterior wall assembly deflects and deforms during a fire. This standard determines the amount of time that the PFB system limits flame propagation. The standard simulates a condition where a fire begins in a room near the exterior wall, and a fire plume exits a window opening.

A properly designed and tested PFB system prevents fire spread from inside through the perimeter joint, taking into account fire assault from both interior and exterior of the wall assembly.


Testing with Intermediate Scale Multistory Apparatus Test

ICC NTA’s experienced fire testing professionals use the Intermediate Scale Multistory Apparatus test (ISMA) to test for a PFB system’s fire resistance and other characteristics. Two types of ratings are provided per the ASTM E2307 test: an “F”-rating in hours (resistance to fire spread) and a “T”-rating in hours (temperature on the non-fire side).


As a member of the International Code Council family of solutions, ICC NTA has what it takes to deploy the right approach to fire safety evaluation. Our resources allow us to work with clients to understand the nature of a building project and to anticipate how a particular design will work to withstand conflagration.


Learn more about how fire testing with ICC NTA can help manufacturers design and build better and safer buildings.