Basic research in chemistry and biotechnology for elimination of
halogenated hydrocarbon pollutants of aquifers and ground water

CHEMIKUT pályázat
Hírek, események
Tájékoztatás, nyilvánosság
Kapcsolódó hivatkozások

Basic research in chemistry and biotechnology for elimination of halogenated hydrocarbon pollutants of aquifers and ground water

In 2008 the National Development Agency published a tender for the establishment of research teams which allowed scientists from Hungary and abroad to work together solving interdisciplinary problems in an innovative way.

In 2009 seven applications of the University of Debrecen were approved and approx. 2.5 billion HUF were allocated for a period of two years for the different teams.

CHEMIKUT is the acronym of the Innovative Research Team working in the field of chemistry (in Hungarian). Six research groups of the Faculty of Sciences and Technology joined forces to work in this project, dealing with different possibilities of elimination of halogenated hydrocarbons (HCH) from unconfined ground waters.

The main objective of the project was to explore the chemical and microbiological background of the removal of HCH’s in a laboratory controlled environment. Several methods were worked out by the six different research groups for the de-halogenation of the organic halides by catalic oxidation and reduction methods and also by biological degradation and metabolism. Analytical methods were also developed and optimized for the determination of halogenated hydrocarbons from the soil and ground water.

The research was supported by the EU and co-financed by the European Social Fund through the Social Renewal Operational Programme. The project also received generous financial support from TEVA Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. Hungary.

Total budget: 339.627.500 HUF

Project funding: 288.683.375 HUF

Start date: 01/07/2009 End date: 31/12/2011

Project members: 84 participants, 8 countries, 5 International Advisory Board members, 3 consultants

Organizational structure of the project:

Activities within the project were coordinated by a specifically organized project management body.

Six thematic innovative research teams were formed for research on chlorinated hydrocarbons with focus on environmental aspects.

Work of the management team and the research groups was aided by an International Advisory Board and outside consultants.

Within the CHEMIKUT project, researchers studied potentially applicable chemical reactions and biological metabolic processes under well-controlled laboratory conditions which also helped understanding the underlying principles.  Reaction kinetic analysis and product distribution determination of several reduction and oxidation processes have been accomplished and new microorganisms were developed for biological destruction of HCH compounds. New analytical techniques were worked out and toxicity of the studied  compounds was established quantitatively both on lower and higher  organisms.


During the 30 months of the project the following results have been arrived at:

            1 patent declaration

            2 awards at international conferences

            3 new courses at the Faculty of Science and Technology

            12 research papers in Hungarian and international journals

            25+ presentations at national and international conferences

            2 MSC theses in chemistry, 3 BSc theses in chemical engineering

            10 publications for disseminations

 Some of the results cannot be quantified, neverthelesss, they are important outcomes of the project:

The project resulted in a very close collaboration between research groups working on different fields of science. It succesfully removed the rigid barriers between departments and proved the advantages of horizontally organized reseach teams for solution of specific interdisciplinary scientific problems. At the same time, rational use of economic sources and research infrastructure was also achieved.

The obtained scientific results reach beyond the field of basic research and may serve as starting points for development of technologies of environmental protection and remediation. In the long run, elimination of pollution areas and destruction of a significant quantity of polluting materials may enhance the collaboration between basic research and development.

A new type of collaboration in environmental science and protection started between the largest university and the largest company (TEVA Pharmaceutical) of the region with mutual benefits for both partners. Ties with several small enterprizes (Analab Kft., NNK Kft.) were strentgthened, and cooperation agreements were signed with a North-Sweedish mining company and with research groups of the University of Almería, University of Cadíz (both of Spain), University of Zagreb (Croatia) and the M. Kopernik University of Torun (Poland).



University of Debrecen

4032 Debrecen

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Telephone: +36 52 512966

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