History of ITTC

The origin of the International Towing Tank Conference was the meeting of the International Hydro-mechanical Congress held in Hamburg in 1932. One of the consequences of this meeting was the decision to maintain, in alternate years, meetings under the name of “The International Conference of Ship Tank Superintendents”. The original idea was to promote the improvement of all aspects of ship model work and to reach agreement on basic procedures and methods of presentation of results for publication. The first Conference of Tank Superintendants was held in The Hague in 1933, the second took place in London in 1934, the third in Paris in 1935 and the last, before the Second World War, in 1937 in Berlin. After the war, the Conference was resumed, starting with the fifth Conference held in London in 1948.

To give continuity from one Conference to another, the 5th Conference appointed a “Standing Committee”, and agreed that the chairman would be the representative of the country arranging the next Conference. It was in the next Conference celebrated in Washington in 1951 when the Standing Committee suggested that a three year interval between the Sixth and the Seventh Conference would be desirable. From then on every three years the Conference has taken place.

It was in the Washington Conference when the suggestion of changing the name was given. For this reason, the Scandinavian Management Committee formed to organize the seventh conference in Oslo in 1954 proposed a change of the name to “International Conference on Ship Hydrodynamics” to the Standing Committee. The name was adopted and was thoroughly used during the seventh conference. However, the Conference did not accept this name, but adopted instead the name “International Towing Tank Conference” for future conferences.

At the 24th Conference held in Edinburgh in 2005, a major revision of the ITTC rules was adopted. Among others, ITTC introduced a general membership fee to cover running costs of the secretariat.

A list of past International Towing Tank Conferences, as well as the proceedings, can be found here.