In 2004 the Institute of Thermal Technology at the Silesian University of Technology celebrated the 100th anniversary of its academic tradition. The roots of the Institute are at the Technical University of  Lvov, where in 1904 the Chair of The Theory of Thermal Machinery was established and Professor Tadeusz FIEDLER was appointed its first head. From 1934 until 1946 the Chair was headed by Professor Stanisław OCHĘDUSZKO. In 1946 Professor OCHĘDUSZKO left Lvov for Silesia, where he created the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machinery as the continuation of its Lvov academic roots. He served as its head until 1969.

The central anniversary celebrations took place on 21. June 2004 at Faculty of Energy and Environmental Engineering,  in the main hall named for Professor Stanisław OCHĘDUSZKO, in the presence of the Rector, Professor Wojciech ZIELIŃSKI, and the authorities of the Faculty with the Dean, Professor Michał BODZEK. The celebration was also honoured by the presence of many guests from the industry sector and other Polish and European universities. The State Technical University of Lvov was represented by its Vice-Rector, ProfessorYevhen P. PISTUN, and Professor Josip MISAK. The history and development of  thermodynamics and thermal engineering in Lvov and Gliwice was presented by the head of the Institute of Thermal Technology ProfessorAndrzej ZIĘBIK. Professor Jerzy BUZEK, a former Polish Prime Minister, who was the honorary guest at the celebration, talked about his academic years at the Institute, and Professor Jan SZARGUT discussed the Lvov and Silesian schools of thermodynamics and thermal engineering. Professor Zbigniew GNUTEK, the Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical and Power Engineering at the University of Technology in Wrocław, showed how they continue Lvov thermodynamics traditions. Professor Yevhen PISTUN talked about the history of the Lvov University of Technology after 1946 and about its current situation. Two professors from the Technical University of Clausthal spoke on behalf of foreign guests: Professor Roman WEBER, who is also a graduate of the Silesian school of thermodynamics, and Professor Rudolf JESCHAR. The importance of the Silesian school of thermodynamics and thermal engineering for the development of Polish energy sector was stressed by the speakers from the industry.

The anniversary celebration in Gliwice was followed by the II International Conference CONTEMPORARY PROBLEMS OF THERMAL ENGINEERING in Ustroń. The anniversary was also commemorated by a publication ?Stulecie tradycji Instytutu Techniki Cieplnej? (A centenary tradition of the Institute of Thermal Technology) and a bulletin on research and academic activities of the Institute in 2002 and 2003.

The Lvov roots

The traditions of Polish technical universities go back to the Technical University of Lvov, which in the years 1844-1915 was the only technical institute of higher education in Poland. In 1904 the Chair of Mechanical Engineering and the Theory of Machinery (headed by Professor Tadeusz FIEDLER from 1894) was divided into two independent chairs: the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machines and the Chair of Mechanical Technology. Professor Fiedler  was appointed the head of the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machines.


Prof. Tadeusz FIEDLER

Professor Tadeusz FIEDLER, who served as the head of the Chair from 1904 to 1929, was also elected the Rector and twice Vice-Rector of the Technical University of Lvov. He was an eminent lecturer, who produced a long list of famous scholars (Roman WITKIEWICZBohdan STEFANOWSKIWiesław CHRZANOWSKILudwik EBERMANStanisław OCHĘDUSZKO), and also the pioneer of modern laboratories which are crucial for experimental research. It was under his watch that the Engine Research House, Calorimetric Laboratory and Machinery Laboratory (1913, the contribution of Professor Bohdan STEFANOWSKI) were founded. ProfessorFIEDLER, the doctor honoris causa of the University, received also full membership of the Committee for Scientific Research in Warsaw. As the result of further reorganizations in the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machines, new chairs emerged: the Chair of Pump Constructions and Water Machines (1911), the Chair of the Theory of Reciprocating Machines (1912), and the Chair of Machine Measurements (1917).


Prof. Roman WITKIEWICZ (1886-1941)

From 1929 to 1934 the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machines was led by Professor Roman WITKIEWICZ, the head of the Chair of Machinery Measurements and Machinery Laboratory. Professor WITKIEWICZ, a graduate of the Technical University of Lvov, wrote his doctorate thesis (Isobaric combustion in a gas engine, 1915) under the supervision of Professor Ludwik EBERMAN, the world-famous Diesel engine constructor. He became assistant professor in 1917, and in 1921 was appointed the head of the Chair of Machine Measurements. Under his leadership the Machinery Laboratory was built (1921-1925). In 1925 Professor WITKIEWICZ initiated the so-called supervisory teams, which  made a significant contribution toward energy management in Polish industry. Another important educational initiative was the introduction of programs for chemical engineering at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. Professor WITKIEWICZ was also a visionary scholar, whose research on gas energy and what is now called distributed power generation were more than half a century ahead of his contemporaries. The number of his students and followers of his new scientific school who become professors in Polish universities is impressive (Jan BOSCHStanisław CHRZANOWSKIStanisław OCHĘDUSZKOWitold OKOŁO-KUŁAKWitold ROSNER,Fryderyk STAUBStanisław STEINDELKazimierz SULIMA-SZAWŁOWSKIZbigniew WERNICKIWiktor WIŚNIOWSKIEliasz ZIELSKI and Zdzisław  ZIÓŁKOWSKI). Professor Roman WITKIEWICZ was killed by the Nazis in Lvov in the night from 3 to 4 July 1941.

In 1934 Assistant Profesor Stanisław OCHĘDUSZKO was appointed the Head of the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machines. A student of Professor WITKIEWICZ, he started work in the Chair of Machinery Measurement, completed doctoral thesis at the Munich University of Technology under the supervision of  Professor Wilhelm NUSSELT, received the Assistant Professor degree in 1936 at the Technical University of Lvov, and became Associate Professor a year later. He served as the head of the Chair until mid 1946, when he settled over to Gliwice and continue his academic career at the Silesian University of Technology.

Silesian traditions

In Gliwice Professor OCHĘDUSZKO focused on the implementation of his Lvov academic experience at the Silesian University of Technology, laying the foundations for the Silesian school of thermodynamics.


Prof. Stanisław OCHĘDUSZKO (1899-1969)

In 1953 the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering was created and the Professor was elected its first Dean. He also contributed to the development of thermodynamics at the Wroclaw University of Technology, where, from 1947 to 1950,  he organized the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machinery and Calorimetric Laboratory. It was also one of his achievements that the Faculty of Mechanical and Power Engineering was founded there (1954). In the post-war period the Chair of Professor OCHĘDUSZKO offered scientific and academic support for other Polish universities: Prof. Witold OKOŁO-KUŁAK, the head of the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machinery at the Gdańsk University of Technology in 1950-53, also worked at the Wrocław University of Technology and the Silesian University of Technology, Professor Jan SZARGUT - the Silesian University of Technology, Professor Czesław GRACZYK - the Silesian University of Technology, Professor Jan SENTEK - AGH Academy of SCIENCES in Cracow and the Cracow University of Technology, Professor Ludwik MILLER - the Silesian University of Technology, ProfessorJózef FOLWARCZNY - the Silesian University of Technology, Professor Zbigniew PIETRZYK - the Silesian University of Technology and the Cracow University of Technology, Professor Stanisław DAWIDOWICZ - the Częstochowa University of Technology and AGH Academy of SCIENCES in Cracow, Professor Stanisław Jerzy GDULA - the Silesian University of Technology and the Łódż University of Technology, Professor Tadeusz BES - Szczecin University of Technology and University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Professor Józef PIENTKA - Poznań University of Technology, Professor Jan SKŁADZIEŃ and Professor Jerzy TOMECZEK - the Silesian University of Technology.

Another aspect of Professor OCHĘDUSZKO?s commitment to his academic activity was his work as the author of many books and publications. He translated into Polish the monographs on thermodynamics and energy management by Professors NUSSELT and BOY. His three volume book ?Theory of Thermal Machinery?, published in 1953-1955, became the fundamental monograph in the thermal sciences used by a generation of Polish energy engineers. The Professor was awarded a State Prize and Publishers? Prize. In 1964 Professor OCHĘDUSZKOpublished his last book: ?Applied Thermodynamics?. Professor OCHĘDUSZKO, a doctor honoris causa laureate of the Silesian University of Technology, was an eminent scholar and devoted academic teacher, who served in a series of public policy positions. He was the first democratically elected Rector of the Silesian University of Technology (1956-1959) and a corresponding member of the Polish Academy of Sciences in 1961. A complete list of his awards is published in the Great PWN Encyclopedia. Professor Stanisław OCHĘDUSZKO retired in October 1969 and he died two months later, in December. The memory of the Professor is still vivid at the Silesian University of Technology (Students scientific circle named of Professor Ochęduszko, a Medal of Professor Ochęduszko awarded for outstanding achievements in thermal engineering, etc).

Professor Jan SZARGUT is the continuator of the Lvov and Silesian academic traditions and the unquestionable leader of the Polish thermodynamics. He originated the exergy analysis in the 60?s and 70?s, which became a fruitful area of research throughout the world. Professor SZARGUT is also the pioneer of the balance methods in thermal processes, system analysis and numerical techniques in heat transfer. Among his students and followers are: Professor Zygmunt KOLENDA - AGH Academy of SCIENCES in Cracow, Professor Teresa STYRYLSKA and Professor Kazimierz MACZEK - Cracow University of Technology, Profesor Jacek ŻELKOWSKI - Technical University of Clausthal, Germany, Professors Edward KOSTOWSKIAndrzej ZIĘBIKJoachim KOZIOŁJanusz WANDRASZJanusz SKOREKZbigniew RUDNICKI - Silesian University of Technology, Assistant ProfessorAntoni GUZIK - Opole University of Technology.

Professor Jan SZARGUT started his studies in Lvov in 1942 and graduated from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at the Silesian University of Technology in 1948. Still a student, he began work at the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machinery. In 1955 he completed his doctoral thesis in the exergy analysis, and two years later was elected the head of the Chair of Thermal Engineering at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. He became Professor in 1962. In 1965 Professor SZARGUT and Assistant Professor Ryszard PETELA published ?Exergy?, a world widely recognized monograph.



In 1969  the Chair of the Theory of Thermal Machinery and the Chair of Thermal Engineering merged into the Chair of Thermal Technology, which in 1971 was renamed as the Institute of Thermal Technology. The Chair and the Institute were headed by Professor Jan SZARGUT and two deputy managers: Professor Józef FOLWARCZNY(research), and Assistant Professor Ryszard PETELA (education). The Institute opened four new divisions: Thermodynamcs and Heat Transfer, Thermal Engineering, Nuclear Energy and Combustion Technology and had the following professors: Professor Witold OKOŁO-KUŁAK, Assistant Professor Stanisław J. GDULA and Assistant Professor Władysław ŁUKASZEK

The Silesian tradition of the Institute is also connected with the Chair of Combustion Engines at the Silesian University of Technology, created in Cracow in 1945 and in the same year transferred to Gliwice to the Faculty of Mechanics. Professor Kazimierz SULIMA-SZAWŁOWSKI, a disciple of Professor Ludwik EBERMAN became its first head. In 1953 the Chair of Combustion Engines was incorporated into the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, and in 1957 the name was changed to the Chair of Reciprocating Thermal Machines, led by Assistant Professor Eryk PRUGAR. In 1969 it was further reorganized into the Chair of Vehicle Operation, with Professor PRUGAR as its head. In 1971 Professor PRUGAR incorporated the Chair into a newly created Institute of Transport and Communication. In 1973 the team of Professor PRUGAR transferred to the Institute of Thermal Technology as the Division of Combustion Engines.

Within 33 years of its history, the Institute has always shown enhanced commitment to research and academic work. Publications have always been an important part of its activity. The long list of the Institute publications include 39 books: Energy Analysis in Steel IndustryThermodynamicsThe Theory of Thermal ProcessesThermodynamic and Economic Analysis in Industrial Processes - all written by Professor Jan SZARGUTFundamentals of Energy Engineering - Professor Jan SZARGUT and Andrzej ZIĘBIKExergy Analysis of Thermal, Chemical and Metallurgical Processes - editor Professor Jan SZARGUTHeat transfer - editor Professor Stanisław J. GDULA,Mathematical Modelling of Energy Management Systems in Industrial Plants - Professor Andrzej ZIĘBIKThermal Analysis of the Convective Three-Stream Heat Exchangers - Professor Jan SKŁADZIEŃNumerical Modeling of Temperature Fields and Industrial Waste Energy - editor Professor Jan SZARGUT, Thermal Radiation and Heat Transfer - Professor Edward KostowskiInverse Thermal Problems - Professors Kazimierz KURPISZ and Andrzej NOWAKTechnical and Economic Effectiveness of Small-Scale Cogeneration Systems - Professor Janusz SKOREKMathematical Modeling of Radiant Energy Transfer - Professor Zbigniew RUDNICKILow-emission Combustion - Professor Ryszard WILK
   The number of degrees granted in the Institute since 1971 is 30 associate professors and 84 assistant professors. The number of BSc and MSc graduates of the Institute from 1971 to 2003 is over 1600 in the following fields: thermal engineering, nuclear engineering, combustion engines, refrigeration, gas energy and environmental protection.

   In 1976 Professor Jan SZARGUT became a corresponding member of the Polish Academy of Sciences, and a full member in 1989. The Professor is the author of 20 monographs and academic publications, as well as over 280 papers in Polish and international journals. He has supervised 28 doctoral thesis. He has been a speaker at over 130 Polish and international conferences.
   Professor SZARGUT is a doctor honoris causa of the Silesian University of Technology and the Częstochowa University of Technology. The Professor has been conferred the highest Polish orders (Order of Poland Reborn: Knight's Cross, Officer's Cross,  Commander's Cross), 12 prizes of I and II degree of the Minister of Education, and numerous Rector?s awards. Professor SZARGUT served as the head of the Institute until 1993, when he retired but still remains an active member of the ITT staff.

After Professor SZARGUT?s retirement, the Institute of Thermal Technology was led by Professor AndrzejZIĘBIK until 2006. Professor ZIĘBIK is the president of The Committee on Thermodynamics and Combustion and a member of the Committee on Energy of the Polish Academy of Sciences. The Professor also serves as the President of the Katowice branch of the Committee of Energy. He was also elected a member of the Applied Research Committee of the State Committee for Scientific Research in 1994 and 1997. On the request of the Prime Minister, Professor ZIĘBIK held the position of a member of the Consulting Board of the President of  the Energy Regulatory Office from 1998 to 2001. Professor ZIĘBIK focuses on thermal engineering. He is the author of 240 publications (95 papers and 145 conference materials), 7 books and monographs and 8 academic publications. Professor Andrzej ZIĘBIK has supervised 8 doctoral thesis (6 with honors). He is a pioneer in the field of system analysis in industrial energy. Professor ZIĘBIK was conferred the Order of Poland Reborn: Knight's Cross and  Officer's Cross, and five prizes of the Minister of Education.


Prof. Andrzej ZIĘBIK

From 1971 to 2006 the following professorships were granted to the ITT scholars: Józef FOLWARCZNY,Stanisław J. GDULARyszard PETELAEryk PRUGARJanusz WANDRASZAndrzej ZIĘBIKEdward KOSTOWSKIStefan POSTRZEDNIKJan SKŁADZIEŃRyszard WILKJoachim KOZIOŁJanusz SKOREK,Zbigniew RUDNICKI, Ryszard BIAŁECKIAndrzej J. NOWAK. The Institute members have served in a series of important policy positions at the Silesian University of Technology: Professor Ryszard PETELA (elected the Rector in 1981, resigned in martial law), Professor Józef FOLWARCZNY (four times elected the Dean and twice the Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering), Professor Jan SKŁADZIEŃ and Professor Ryszard WILK (both served twice the Faculty Deans), Professor Ryszard WILK (currently the Vice-Rector of the Silesian University of Technology), Deans Eryk PRUGAREdward KOSTOWSKIJan NADZIAKIEWICZHenryk GÓRNIAK andJanusz SKOREK. Professor Joachim KOZIOŁ is the head of Engineering Education Centre at the Silesian University of Technology in Rybnik.

Staff of the Institute of Thermal Technology in 1980

The Institute has always actively co-operated with Polish industry, offering many technological solutions (about 60 implementations, over 50 patents and designs). Research grants and international collaboration is also an important part of the Institute activity (e.g. TEMPUS). Within the 5th Framework Programme of the European Commission the Institute was given the status of  the Centre of Excellence of OPTI_Energy Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems and Processes. Professor Ryszard BIAŁECKI was the co-ordinator of the Centre.

From September 2006  the Institute of Thermal Technology has been headed by Professor Ryszard BIAŁECKI.

The II International Conference 

The second International Conference on contemporary problems of thermal engineering was held in Ustroń from 21 to 25 June 2004. It was also an occasion to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the academic tradition of the Institute of Thermal Technology. The Conference was organized by the OPTI_Energy Centre of Excellence in co-operation with the Commission for Energy Management of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Katowice. The conference was held in English.

The conference programme included the following issues:

    contemporary technologies of heat, electricity and cold generation and their impact on the environment
    exergy application in technology and environmental protection
    application of artificial intelligence in research on energy systems and processes
    numerical methods in heat transfer,
    selected problems of industrial and communal energy management
    control systems in power and heat plants
    CO2 removal systems in power and heat plants

The conference lectures were delivered by professors invited from renowned European institutions. ProfessorJohn McMULLAN from the University of Ulster at Coleraine, the head editor of the International Journal of Energy Research delivered a lecture: ?Contemporary Energy Technologies. Key Factors for Development?. Professor Enrico SCIUBBA (the University of Rome ?La Sapienza?), co-author of a book on the application of artificial intelligence as a research tool for energy systems and processes made a presentation: ?Three Current Artificial Intelligence Applications in the Field of Energy Conversion Systems Design?. Professor Antonio VALERO, the director of the Centre of Research for Energy Resources and Consumption at the University in Zaragoza delivered a lecture on a topic which he prepared with his co-workers: ?Control Systems of Running Power and CHP Plants. Performance Monitoring, Cost Assessment and Thermoeconomic Diagnosis?. Professor Giampaolo MANFRIDA from the  University of Florence delivered a lecture: ?Including CO2 Removal in Power Plants?. The most distinguished scholar of the Polish thermodynamics, Professor Jan SZARGUT, prepared and delivered a lecture: ?Exergy Application in Technology and Ecology?. 
   The total number of conference participants was over one hundred, with twenty foreign guests, and about fifty representants of the Polish industry. During the conference fifty five lectures were delivered, divided into five theme sections. It is worth mentioning that ten presentations were made by the industry representatives.
   The conference was organized under the patronage of the Rector of the Silesian University of Technology Professor Wojciech ZIELIŃSKI. The Chairman of the Organizing Committee was Professor Andrzej ZIĘBIK, the Chairman of Scientific Committee was Professor Jan SZARGUT. The conference was sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Information Technology and Polish industry (Sothern Energy Concern, Opole Power Plant, Rybnik Power Plant, Bytom Heat and Power Plants, Municipal Heating Company at Gliwice, Upper Silesia Electricity Board S.A., Energoprojekt Katowice, Metso Automation Poland, Procom-System - Wrocław).