Practical trainings, student assistants and theses

Synthesis of innovative collectors for application in recovery of metals from industrial wastewaters (Id 384)

Bachelor theses / Master theses / Diploma theses / Compulsory internship

Ion flotation and solvent extraction are promising separation processes to separate and/or remove low concentrated metals from process waters. The demand for developing special collectors (ion flotation reagent)/extractants for enhanced separation efficiency of metals using these processes is increasing due to increased demand for the metals. Further to make these processes sustainable, these special molecules need to be highly selective, efficient and ecofriendly. Strong metal binding ability is the main requisite for such novel molecules and further depending on their application, they need to behave as flotation or solvent extraction reagent. However, synthesizing novel collectors having both abilities is a challenging task. Thus, the main aim is to modify the molecules with already known metal specificity, to introduce the hydrophobicity required for the ion flotation or solvent extraction process.
This student work aims to modify the molecules by adding new functionalities and synthesizing them for improved metal complexation and process application. Additionally, their characterization as possible reagents in either flotation or solvent extraction processes will be investigated. The results will help in fundamental understanding of modified molecules in terms of their interaction with metals as well as form the basis for the development of a sustainable metal recovery process. This interdisciplinary project offers a unique integration of approaches, competences and resources in biotechnology, chemistry and process and environmental engineering and involves different departments at HIF.


  • Selection of hydrophobic group
  • Modification, synthesis and purification of novel molecules
  • Characterization of developed molecules, Ion flotation or solvent extraction tests

Department: Hydrometallurgy

Contact: Dr. Chakankar, Mital Vivek, Dr. Kelly, Norman, Dr. Patil, Ajay Bhagwan


  • Field of study: Chemistry, Chemical Engineering
  • Experience in organic chemistry, knowledge of the techniques to synthesize compounds and to characterize them; experience in coordination chemistry, biochemistry and/or technical chemistry is advantageous
  • Good communication skills in German and English, spoken and written
  • Ability to work independently and systematically


Working in a multi-disciplinary and international team, with world class research environment at HZDR and HIF.
Can get cross functional working experience and exposure to organic synthesis, modified biomolecules, solution and extractive hydrometallurgy, process biotechnology, chemical and environmental engineering

  • Working place HZDR: Location Dresden or Freiberg (HIF)
  • Start date: Either an immediate start or a start in 2023 is possible
  • Duration: 6 month
  • Remuneration according to HZDR internal regulation

Online application

Please apply online: english / german