Abschlussarbeiten, HiWi-Stellen und Praktika

Development of a process for chemical recycling of plastic waste

Level of work

Master thesis or Internship


Observing the current trends in the production and subsequent waste management, 12000 Mt of plastic waste will be disposed in the landfills by 2050. Majority of this waste originates from several poly-condensed polymers and majorly constitutes three types of polymers, namely, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polycarbonate (PC) and polyamide (PA). Further, polylactic acid (PLA) and polyethylene furanoate (PEF) are also referred to as promising bio-based alternatives to the afore-mentioned petrochemical polymers. The aim is to develop a selective and sustainable chemical recycling strategy for these poly-condensed fractions to obtain their constituent monomers and/or other valuable chemicals, thereby preventing environmental pollution and contributing to a resource-efficient future.

Project description

The ultimate goal is to develop a holistic strategy for chemical recycling of plastic waste.


  • Comprehensive literature research on the current state-of-the-art technologies for recycling packaging waste
  • Identifying relevant fractions that can be subjected to chemical recycling
  • Developing a process for selective depolymerisation using eco-friendly solvents and low molecular weight organic catalysts
  • Modifying the catalyst to increase its molecular weight without altering its efficacy and sustainability
  • Extending the developed strategy to different post-consumer waste streams
  • Contributing to a publication to disseminate the scientific findings


  • Degree in Chemistry or Chemical and/or Process Engineering
  • Interest in subjects like Catalysis, Circular Economy, Chemical Reaction Engineering, Process Synthesis & Intensification and Sustainability (Green Chemistry)
  • Self-reliance
  • Practical laboratory experience
  • Motivation to establish this topic further at Fraunhofer ICT
  • Dissemination of the results through appropriate publications and/or at relevant conferences


  • Pfinztal Berghausen (Lab)
  • Home-Office (Literature Research/Master-Thesis/ Publication)

Starting date

By agreement

  • Die Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft legt Wert auf eine geschlechtsunabhängige berufliche Gleichstellung. Wir freuen uns auf Ihre Bewerbung!