Our history

The basis for IFRF was established in 1948 with the creation of an International Flame Radiation Research Committee. The use of the word "Radiation" reflected the focus of research interest at that time. We became known as IFRF in 1955 and were registered in the Netherlands.

Initially IFRF was an industrially based co-operative research organisation between:

  • British Iron and Steel Research Association (BISRA)
  • Iron and Steel Research Association of France (IRSID)
  • Royal Dutch Iron and Steel Company (KNHS)

This international consortium provided the basis for the design of handbooks for the steam atomised, heavy fuel oil lances used in open hearth furnaces in France, the Netherlands and the UK during the fifties and sixties, until the Siemens-Martin process was superseded by LD-steelmaking.

Our objectives were expanded - initially in terms of heat transfer by radiation, and subsequently in the field of flame aerodynamics and chemistry, to encompass flames from other fuels to be applied in combustion chambers of other industries.

Since then IFRF has grown into a network with members in over 20 countries worldwide including Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Mexico, China, Poland, Sweden, the UK and USA.

Each decade of IFRF's existence has been characterised by specific research themes:

  • 1960s - combustion aerodynamics
  • 1970s -  NOx, mathematical modelling - contract research introduced
  • 1980s - coal combustion research, near field aerodynamics
  • 1990s - combustion system scaling, numerical simulations - specialised research facilities

All these phases are described in the book Spirit of IJmuiden, Fifty years of the IFRF, 1948-1998 published by Roman Weber and available from IFRF on request.

In 2018, we will be celebrating our 70th anniversary with a series of events and publications - keep your eyes peeled for some announcements soon. Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn to keep up to date with our activities. 

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