This study discusses the application of Taguchi method in assessing maximum temperature gradient for the Ranque-Hilsch counter flow vortex tube performance. The experiments were planned based on Taguchi's L27 orthogonal array with each trial performed under different conditions of inlet pressure, nozzle number and fluid type. Signal-to-noise ratio (SIN) analysis, analysis of variance (ANOVA) and regression analysis were carried out in order to determine the effects of process parameters and optimal factor settings. Finally, confirmation tests verified that Taguchi method achieved optimization of counter flow Ranque-Hilsch vortex tube performance with sufficient accuracy. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd and IIR. All rights reserved.