Putting Funds to Use to Drive Innovative Solutions for the Industry, Foundation Members

At ARF, our mission, as a nonprofit research and education foundation, is to promote, fund and provide scientific and educational projects that are related to the use of ammonia, natural refrigerants and industrial refrigeration. It’s not only our mission, but it is our reality.

As members of our organization, the industry and the community, we believe that providing our end users with transparent data is the key to a successful research and education foundation. That’s why we’d like to share with you – our valued members – our screening process for proposals, our current research projects and our successes that you have made possible.


ARF is extremely selective when determining which research proposals to fund. In fact, the process is quite complex because we are committed to only funding research projects that add value to our end users.

While in the past, the screening process was not as thorough, for the past 5-6 years, we have adopted a formal vetting process to achieve the results we feel are most beneficial for our members and the industry.

This vetting process includes a scoring sheet for each proposal received by the foundation. The scoring sheet evaluates the following:

  • Value: Each proposal is placed into a category to determine who gains value. These categories include contractors, design engineers, equipment manufacturing and end users.
  • Significance: Our team wants to make sure that the research project addresses questions that are scientifically important and addresses our overall mission. In addition, we score based on whether or not the proposal’s goals and end results will have a meaningful impact on our alliance membership and the industry.
  • Innovation: All proposals are evaluated for how the project will make a meaningful contribution to the industry. Innovation is scored based on whether or not the research project will help reduce costs, help with efficiency, assist with manufacturing, installation of equipment and safety and reduce manpower or material.


Once a research project is evaluated based on the vetting process criteria, budget and academic impact, our team compiles a research agreement that outlines the statement of work, the period of performance, the expected outcome and benefit to the organization and a schedule of payments.

Because we want to provide our membership and the industry with quality work, we have instituted a thorough contract for each project and require progress reports before any funds are released. On average, due to the complicated subject matter, most research projects take two to three years to complete. At any given time, the foundation funds from two to three projects so that we can provide deliverables that benefit our members and the industry.

We also make it mandatory for each research team to compile a technical paper and present their findings at our annual conference. In addition, all technical papers are added to our extensive library that is accessible to our members for future use.


As a member of our organization, you have access to past research projects in our expansive library of data. However, we’d like to pinpoint a few active projects that we are currently funding to show you the type of innovation that is happening because of your donations and contributions to ARF.

  •  Development of a Mechanical Insulation Installation Guideline for Refrigeration Applications: This project is intended to provide best practice details for inclusion in an installation guideline for insulation systems for refrigeration applications (pipes, tanks and equipment). This will include a thorough treatment of vapor retarder joints, insulation joints and insulation system terminations. As a minimum, this guideline will address the installation of insulation systems of all of the materials currently listed in the IIAR Piping Handbook.
  • CFD Simulation of an Ammonia Dispersion Within Refrigerated Spaces: The goal of this research is to assess and if necessary, develop code language concerning ammonia detector placement in cold rooms based on numerical simulation of ammonia releases within them.  

A few of our completed research project scopes include:

  • Optimum Pipe Sizing: The objective of this research was to revisit the economic sizing methodology, originally proposed by Genereaux and subsequently transplanted into the industrial refrigeration industry by Richards, in order to update and expand the recommended pipe sizing tables included in the IIAR Piping Handbook. A primary aim of this project is to provide a computer-based analysis tool that will allow users to explore optimum pipe sizing based on input data that includes piping system capital cost information, system energy cost data, piping system life expectancy, and refrigeration system operating efficiency information. 
  •  Influence of P-Trap vs. 90 Degree Elbow Inlet on Two-Phase Pressure Drop in Vertical Suction Risers: This study was carried out on the test rig developed for ASHRAE RP-1327 at the Danish Technological Institute (DT) in Aarhus, Denmark. The information produced by this study has furthered the understanding of twophase pressure drop and flow in risers and should lead us to better designs with this critical part of ammonia piping systems.


Our goal is to provide our members and the industry with deliverables that ultimately help you to operate more efficiently and save money. Contributions to your foundation make it possible for innovative researchers to analyze, evaluate and test strategies and techniques that directly impact the work you do on a daily basis.

As a non-profit organization, ARF relies heavily on contributions to make research not just a goal, but a reality. We believe in providing transparency so that you can directly benefit from the research that is performed. This research not only impacts the present, but also the future of this industry. We encourage you to consider donating to ARF so we can continue to uncover innovation that will last a lifetime.