Ruben Goldhahn Awarded with Prize by the Association of German Engineers (VDI)

Excellent Research on Efficient Chemical Recycling of Polyamides

August 03, 2021

Ruben Goldhahn was honoured for his master thesis by the Magdeburg regional group of the Association of German Engineers (VDI). He received the prize during the awarding ceremony on 27 July 2021 from Dr. Jürgen Ude, state secretary in the Ministry for Economic Affairs, Science and Digitalization in Saxony-Anhalt, and Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Rüdiger Bähr, president of the VDI Magdeburg regional group.

Ruben Goldhahn was honoured for his master thesis on „Depolymerization of polyamide 12 with customized ionic liquids“ by the Magdeburg regional group of the Association of German Engineers (VDI). He is a master student of Process Engineering at the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg, and team member of the Max-DePoly project in the Process Systems Engineering group at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics of Complex Technical Systems Magdeburg. The prize recognizes outstanding scientific contributions of young scientists and aims to promote young researchers.

The thesis has been supervised by Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kai Sundmacher, director at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics of Complex Technical Systems Magdeburg and head of the department Process Systems Engineering, and by Dr. techn. Liisa Rihko-Struckmann, teamleader for Sustainable Production Systems in the research group Process Systems Engineering.

Due to their extreme high durability and strength, various polyamide categories are used in sportswear, textiles, carpets, lightweight vehicle construction and in 3D printing. The Max-DePoly project aims to develop depolymerization processes following the idea of chemical recycling to monomers. The aim of the research project is to recover the monomers in such a high yield and purity that the monomers can be repolymerized without any loss of quality in their properties.

Ruben Goldhahn and his mentor Mentor Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kai Sundmacher, director at the Max Planck Institute Magdeburg.

With his experiments, Ruben Goldhahn has decisively contributed to find the best compositions of ionic liquids with specific solvation properties in order to break the hydrogen bond between the polymer chains and to decompose the crystalline PA structure.

Ruben Goldhahn studied Chemical Engineering at the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg from October 2015 to July 2019, when he successfully received his bachelor degree. Currently, he studies here Process Engineering in the master course of study since October 2019. He receives the German grant Deutschlandstipendium, since April 2020 up to now funded by the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg and by the Dow Olefinverbund GmbH. From April 2016 to March 2019 it was funded by the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg and by the IPT Pergande GmbH.

Ruben Goldhahn gained practical experience in the engineering sciences at various companies, among others in the Labor für Umweltschutz GmbH, Magdeburg, and at the Sunfire GmbH, a company specialized in electrolysis, located in Dresden.

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