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MEI Online: People News: Europe: April 27th 2018

 
 

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:: Prof. Heinrich Schubert (1926–2018)

 

One of the great minds of the international mineral processing and mechanical process engineering community, scientist, lecturer and engineer, honorable Prof. Dr.sc.techn. Drs.h.c. Heinrich Schubert passed away peacefully on Monday, April 9th 2018 at the age of 92 in his home in Freiberg, Germany. After a very long and successful career and life, he has left the world with more than 300 papers, having guided and supervised about 550 graduates and 60 PhD students and exchanged and interacted with many colleagues worldwide, who were highly influenced by him. His famous German books on Mineral Processing in three volumes, Mechanical Process Engineering and the Handbook of Mechanical Process Engineering will always have their place in libraries to be used by future engineers and scientists. We are sad to not having him around anymore for his critical comments and helpful advices. At the same time, we are very grateful for all his work and achievements.

Prof. Heinrich Schubert is well acknowledged in the German mineral processing as well as process and chemical engineering community for having introduced the consequent distinction between physical-chemical fundamentals, micro processes, macro processes and the application, which leads to a deep understanding of the scientific basis in process and chemical engineering.

Prof. Heinrich Schubert is well acknowledged in the German mineral processing as well as process and chemical engineering community for having introduced the consequent distinction between physical-chemical fundamentals, micro processes, macro processes and the application, which leads to a deep understanding of the scientific basis in process and chemical engineering.

Prof. Schubert was born January 23rd 1926 in Pirna-Jessen, close to the east German city of Dresden. He studied from 1947 until 1951 at the Bergakademie Freiberg, graduated as a mineral process engineer in 1951, and in addition as a mining engineer in 1952, followed by his PhD as Dr.-Ing. in 1956. From 1952 until 1959, he was working in the non-ferrous metal industry of the German Democratic Republic before he became a lecturer at the Bergakademie Freiberg in 1960 where he stayed until 1991. In 1969, he became a full professor and let the Institute of Mineral Processing where he received his PhD B in 1971 as Dr.sc.techn. He led the faculty of engineering sciences from 1980 until 1991. In those years, he also had the privilege to be visiting professor outside of socialist east Germany, when he stayed at the University of Queensland, Australia in 1981, the University of Iowa, USA in 1982 and the Iron and Steel University Wuhan, China in 1989. After his retirement in 1991 he stayed very active publishing papers and attending meetings. His lectures covered the fields of mechanical process engineering, mineral processing and particle technology.

Prof. Heinrich Schubert
Prof. Heinrich Schubert

His main research areas have been:

  • The Modification of particle surface properties through selective adsorption, here especially the molecule structure impact on and energy balance of adsorption of amphiphiles
  • The micro processes of comminution
  • The modelling and optimization of processes in multiphase flows, especially in froth flotation and hydrocyclone
  • Bulk solids flow, especially of salts
  • The special focus on the mineral processing and micro process phenomena with ores of potash, fluorite, cassiterite and kaolinite and as well the mechanical recycling processes

He has received many prestigious awards and recognitions:

  • 1980 “Nationalpreis für Wissenschaft und Technik” (national prize for science and technology) of the German Democratic Republic
  • 1987 honorary doctorate Dr. h.c. (Technical University of Miskolc, Hungary)
  • 1988 honorary doctorate Dr.-Ing. e.h. (Technical University Leuna-Merseburg, German Democratic Republic)
  • 1989 honorary doctorate Dr. h.c. (Wuhan University of Iron and Steel, Wuhan, China)
  • 1997 Hans-Rumpf Medal of DVCV (german union of chemical engineers)
  • 2006 IMPC Life Time Achievement Award
  • 2016 Special Issue in the International Journal of Mineral Processing for his 90s birthday (doi.org/10.1016/j.minpro.2016.09.003)

It was only in July 2017 that he decided to stop with the supervision of his last PhD student Mr. Duong Huu Hoang passing on the supervision to Dr. Martin Rudolph and Prof Urs Peuker. At this point of time, he expressed to us that he feels he has had a great life, which he has been very grateful for, hence he would like to let the younger generation move on. The last moment he presented himself to the mineral processing community was at the traditional annual Freiberg Mineral Processing Conference in November 2017 when walking became harder and harder.

His friends and colleagues got to know and appreciate Prof. Schubert as an outstanding person with great persuasiveness and very high standards in himself and in others. We will keep this memory of his legacy in honor.

We invite all international colleagues to use the comment function to express their gratitude and memorable moments. You are further invited, to use the German condolence blog (Link: blogs.hrz.tu-freiberg.de/kondolenz-schubert/) for this.

By Dr.-Ing. Martin Rudolph, Helmholtz-Institute Freiberg for Resource Technology, Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf with Dr.-Ing. Thomas Mütze and Prof. Dr.-Ing. Urs Alexander Peuker, Institute of Mechanical Process Engineering and Mineral Processing, TU Bergakademie Freiberg

 

 

   

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