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IFRF Conference delegates given tour of national PACT facilities

By June 21, 2018 No Comments
Philip Sharman, IFRF Director speaks at the IFRF 2018 Conference at Sheffield Town Hall, Sheffield, United Kingdom on Wednesday 30th May, 2018.

In May 2018, 120 people from 15 countries gathered at the iconic Sheffield Town Hall to be part of International Flame Research Foundation’s (IFRF) landmark 70th anniversary conference, with over 50 presentations tackling a range of research areas and sectors sharing the theme of identifying clean, safe and efficient industrial combustion.


A highlight for conference delegates was a guided tour of  the University of Sheffield’s Pilot-scale Advanced Capture Technology (PACT) site in Beighton.  The national specialist research and development facilities for combustion and carbon capture technology research, PACT ‘s integrated pilot-scale equipment has significant analytical capability. 


Encompassing advanced computational modelling, experimental testing and detailed imaging facilities to form a validating and complementary system, PACT ensures a credible output and in-depth understanding of the impact of flame characteristics, critical reaction kinetics, devolatilsation and char reaction in the combustion processes.  


Philip Sharman, Director, International Flame Research Foundation said: “As part of IFRF’s 70th Anniversary Conference in Sheffield in May, we were delighted to be able to offer delegates the opportunity to visit the University of Sheffield’s PACT facilities at Beighton. 


“Welcomed by Kris Milkowski, PACT’s Business Development Manager, the group of delegates were shown around these unique, flexible, integrated pilot-scale facilities by PACT researchers.  Delegates were particularly interested by the 250kWth combustion plant capable of burning biomass and/or coal in air or oxyfuel regimes, the 1tCO2/day post-combustion capture rig, the two 330kWth (input) gas turbines enabling experimentation with exhaust gas recirculation for CO2 reduction, and the state-of-the-art analytical equipment available to researchers using this impressive national facility”.


In addition to a tour of the PACT facilities, delegates attended keynotes from Jim Swithenbank, University of Sheffield; IFRF Director Philip Sharman; IFRF General Secretary Mohamed Pourkashanian; Jörg Leicher, GWI; Ian Hodgson, DG Environment and Steve Griffiths, Uniper. In addition, one of PACT’s low-carbon and sustainable energy generation researchers; Dr Karen Finney, chaired a panel session at the conference on solid fuels.

Mohamed Pourkashanian, IFRF General Secretary speaks at the IFRF 2018 Conference at Sheffield Town Hall, Sheffield, United Kingdom on Wednesday 30th May, 2018.

Other lively panel discussions on the environmental constraints of modern day industrial combustion took place between Ian Hodgson; Jeremy Nicholson, Energy Intensive User Group; Fredrik Neuwahl, European IPPC Bureau; and Keith Burnard, IEA GHG, which was convened by Kurt Kraus, Honeywell Callidus UOP Technologies.


Outside of the main hall activities there were 15 technical sessions (with a total of 42 papers) which delegates were able to move between to capture the talks most relevant to their area of interest.


Attendees were also invited to a drinks reception and gala dinner at the Magna Science Centre’s ‘Face of Steel’ exhibition. Feedback from attendees has been very positive, including:


“Very interesting topics and high level of participants. Good distribution between industry and academia. This conference is a must.”

“Well organised event with combustion expertise in all areas. Good networking opportunities”

“Extremely interesting event as always. Great presentations and networking”


Click here to view the photo gallery from the event (courtesy of Wilkinson Photography).


To relive the conference – read IFRF’s Twitter Moment which captures the thoughts, discussions and pictures over both days.


Later this year the IFRF will be publishing a special edition of Industrial Combustion Journal to include some of the technical presentations covered by #IFRF2018. 


The next IFRF event will be TOTeM45 (Topic Orientated Technical Meeting) which will be held in Cardiff, UK. TOTeM45 will be looking at Gas Turbines for Future Energy Systems. Full details including programme outline and online booking for TOTeM45 are available here.


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