The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Center (ACRC) was established in 1988 by the National Science Foundation of the United States as an Industry-University cooperative research center.

Since its founding, the ACRC has provided a forum for industry and university to coordinate, shape and share precompetitive research on compact, energy-efficient, environmentally friendly technologies in various areas of HVAC&R. Undergraduate & graduate students, post-doctoral researchers, visiting scholars and faculty conduct research in heat and mass transfer, fluid flow and its characterization, acoustics, dynamics, control systems, design, materials, and generally in the thermal sciences. The ACRC research program is driven by a range of industry and academic interests, and this partnership drives highly innovative and multidisciplinary advanced study.