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The Institute (originally named ‘The Institute of Theoretical Fundamentals of Chemical Engineering – ITFCE’) formally originated from two existing teams, which already had a long tradition, in the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences in 1960. The Department of Chemical Technology of the Chemical Institute headed by Professor Vladimir Bažant was one of them and the Department of Chemical Engineering headed by Professor George Standart was the other one. The former introduced research in the field of organosilicon compounds and heterogeneous catalysis, the latter continued the research on distillation and extraction. In 1964, a group from the Institute of Physical Chemistry addressing thermodynamics and phase equilibria also joined the new Institute. Professor Vladimir Bažant was the founder of the Institute and its first Director until his death in 1973. Professor Eduard Hála was the second personality who gained great acknowledgement and co-created the ‘image’ of the Institute. 

 

  

Vladimír Bažant (1920-1973)

 

Eduard Hála (1919-1989)

In 1964, the Institute moved to new premises in the northwest suburbs of Prague (on the border of the cadastral area of Suchdol and Lysolaje). The new and more spacious buildings allowed arrival of new staff which in the late 1960s reached the number of 330 employees. Furthermore, other fields of chemical engineering and chemical technologies, such as reactor engineering, homogeneous catalysis, study of non-Newtonian fluids, sublimation, separation processes, dynamics and control of chemical systems, and others were newly introduced.  The majority of these new sub-fields were established as a logically needed support for a large and multiannual project for development of complete technology for the production of the terephthalic acid and polyesters.

Since 1989 several reorganizations have taken place, leading to a gradual staff reduction by 50 %. Heterogeneous and fragmented multidisciplinary research has been rationally integrated, which reflects the current structure of the Institute. The name was also changed to more comprehensive ‘Institute of Chemical Process Fundamentals’; traditional English name – ‘Institute of Chemical Process Fundamentals’ has remained.

Since 2007 the status of the Institute has been changed in accordance with the Law No. 341/2005 Coll. to a ‘Public Research Institution (v.v.i.)’ with equivalent adjustment of management and scientific bodies.