What is Chemical Engineering?
Chemical or Process Engineering is an interdisciplinary engineering science, which deals with processes of converting raw materials or chemicals into more useful or valuable products through by physical, chemical or biological means. The modern disciplines of chemical engineering comprises much more than just process engineering and material production. Chemical engineers are now engaged in pioneering valuable new materials and techniques; an important form of research and development. Therefore, chemical engineers not only need knowledge of natural and various engineering sciences but also a sound understanding of economics.
Since material properties and their behaviour can be expressed in mathematical equations, conversion processes and apparatus behaviour can be described by dedicated mathematical models. Using these models, chemical engineers are simulating and optimizing any process in order to design and construct sustainable production plants or to analyse the performance of existing processes aiming for an optimal conversion of resources.
Besides continuous improvements of established processes, chemical engineers are also strongly involved in the operation of production plants to guarantee stable properties of the desired products. Due to the fact that any industrial production is connected with emission of pollutants, chemical engineers have developed approaches either to reduce the formation of these pollutants or to remove any impurities before emitting them to the environment.
Chemical Engineers describe the wide range of conversion processes by means of similar basic unit operations. Students are therefore educated in the underlying principles of the physical, chemical, thermodynamical and biological phenomena in each unit operation by deepening their knowledge in natural sciences as well as engineering subjects such as heat and mass transfer or thermodynamics.
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