Report on the XXI IIR International Congress of Refrigeration

Mark A. Kedzierski


HVAC&R Equipment Performance Group



The XXI IIR International Congress of Refrigeration (ICR2003), hosted by The U.S. National Committee of the International Institute of Refrigeration, was held August 17 through August 22, in Washington DC, after a 32-year absence in the U.S.  The official attendance of the Congress totaled more than 750 members representing 58 countries.  Nearly 440 papers by 1031 authors from 46 countries were presented.  Therefore it was fitting that the theme of the congress was global: "Serving the Needs of Mankind."  As outlined below, conference chairs Jerry Groff of Groff and Associates and Mark Menzer of the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI) planned and organized a stunning conference.

The Congress held six Plenary Sessions including those given by a Nobel Prize winner in physics, an undersecretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and presidents of refrigeration and air-conditioning companies and organizations.  gExploring the Realm of Ultra Low Temperatures,h by Dr. William Phillips caused many to rethink traditional concepts of low temperature, giving many a different perspective of their own work.

The Congress presented twelve short courses, including gDesigning Quiet Transport Refrigeration Equipment,h by Richard Wood, and gRefrigeration and Electronic Cooling,h by Reinhard Radermacher.  The short course offerings were a good blend of traditional and novel refrigeration.

Nine tours were given, including one to my Groupfs laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).  We welcomed three groups of bright and curious visitors to our lab where we shared our research on two-phase heat transfer, system simulation modeling, micro electro mechanical systems (MEMS) technology, and with environmental test chambers. Other tours to refrigeration manufacturing plants were also scheduled – including a tour to see the HVAC systems of the gothic Washington Cathedral.

Washington proved to be an excellent host city for the social events organized by the Congress. Tours presented the visitor a revealing view of the U.S. capitol with excursions to the F.D.R. Memorial, Capitol Hill, Georgetown, Embassy Row, and other places of history, charm and power.

In keeping their promise: gproviding for the refrigeration needs of mankind,h the Program Committee Chairs Ray Cohen and Eckhard Groll provided a technical program for the interchange of new ideas and latest work in the field using ten timely conference themes: Cryophysics and Cryoengineering: Keys to Advanced Science and Technology

Advances in Gas Separation and Cryogenics; New Fluids and Energy Efficient Transfer Processes in Advanced Refrigeration Technology; New fluids, New Systems, and System Integration; Advances in Understanding Mechanisms of Natural and Artificial Freezing and Chilling Injury; Refrigeration for Preserving the Quality and Enhancing the Safety of Foods; Refrigerated Storage for Safe, Good Quality Food; Safety and Quality of Transported Food; Engineering Better Working and Living Environments; and, Energy-Efficient Heating and Cooling Systems for Buildings.