Generation of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) tends to increase with the growing population and economic development of the society; therefore, establishing environmentally sustainable waste management strategies is crucial. In this sense, waste to energy strategies have come into prominence since they increase the resource efficiency and replace the fossil fuels with renewable energy sources by enabling material and energy recovery instead of landfill disposal of the wastes. Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF), which is an alternative fuel produced from energy-rich Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) materials diverted from landfills, is one of the waste to energy strategies gaining more and more attention. This study aims to investigate the thermal characteristics and co-combustion efficiency of two RDF samples in Turkey. Proximate, ultimate and thermogravimetric analyses (TGA) were conducted on these samples. Furthermore, elemental compositions of ash from RDF samples were determined by X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) analysis. The RDF samples were combusted alone and co-combusted in mixtures with coal and petroleum coke in a lab scale reactor at certain percentages on energy basis (3%, 5%, 10%, 20% and 30%) where co-combustion processes and efficiencies were investigated. It was found that the calorific values of RDF samples on dry basis were close to that of coal and a little lower compared to petroleum coke used in this study. Furthermore, the analysis indicated that when RDF in the mixture was higher than 10%, the CO concentration in the flue gas increased and so the combustion efficiency decreased; furthermore, the combustion characteristics changed from char combustion to volatile combustion. However, RDF addition to the fuel mixtures decreased the SO2 emission and did not change the NO profiles. Also, XRF analysis showed that the slagging and fouling potential of RDF combustion was a function of RDF portion in fuel blend. When the RDF was combusted alone, the slagging and fouling indices of its ash were found to be higher than the limit values producing slagging and fouling. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.