Welcome to SIM² KU Leuven

SIM² KU Leuven is a leading, interdisciplinary research cluster at KU Leuven uniting the research groups working on Sustainable Inorganic Materials Management.
SIM² KU Leuven’s mission is to develop, organise and implement problem-driven, science-deep research and future-oriented education, contributing to the
environmentally friendly production and recycling of metals, minerals and engineered materials, supporting the transition to a climate-friendly, circular-economy.



ETN DEMETER in the spotlight…again!

The EU Research Executive Agency selected DEMETER as the Marie Skłodowska Curie project to be featured in the REA 10th anniversary video. Gwen Bailey explains the importance of the DEMETER research for clean mobility in the EU.

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Meet SIM² researchers


Meet our SIM² KU Leuven researcher: Prof. Philippe Muchez

Philippe Muchez is professor at the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the KU Leuven and dean of the Faculty of Science. His is head of the Ore Geology and Geofluids research unit. Philippe Muchez coordinates one of SIM² KU Leuven’s flagship EU projects: EU H2020 ETN SULTAN and

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Research Results


Highly selective process developed to recover germanium

Germanium is a precious metal which is mainly used as a semiconductor in electronics and infrared optic industries, and as a polymerisation catalyst for the production of polyethylene terephthalate. Due to its high supply risk and its high economic importance, germanium is considered as one of Europe’s critical metals.

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Solvometallurgical recovery of metals from SmCo magnets

A solvometallurgical route for recycling of SmCo permanent magnets was developed by researchers from the SOLVOMET Group (SIM² KU Leuven). The method is based on non-aqueous solvent extraction to minimize water consumption.
The work is published in Separation and Purification Technology.

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Flagship projects & initiatives