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In the frame of a research program a basis for the realistic simulation of timber structural members in case of fire was developed. Using the finite difference method, a computer program was developed to analyze the behavior of timber members under fire exposure. The fire resistance time of wooden columns as well as wooden beams with and without axial compression can be determined. In this case the charring rate is not fixed but in a preceding thermal analysis it is calculated as a function of parameters such as moisture content, temperature level, exposure time, cross-section area etc. The temperature influence on the thermal and strength properties as well as the geometrical and physical non-linearities were considered.