SUSU Students Work on Creating a High-technology Enterprise for Catalysts Production

The Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (INSM) of South Ural State University combines fundamental scientific training and modern technologies, what allows it to be a competitive “supplier” of employees on the current labour market. The Institute comprises three faculties (Faculty of Mathematics, Mechanics and Computer Sciences, Faculty of Physics and Faculty of Chemistry), maintains active scientific bonds with the leading universities of Great Britain, Germany, USA, Spain, Serbia, and Finland. Among its lecturers are world-class scientists.

Alevtina Keller, Director of the Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Doctor of Sciences (Physics and Mathematics), Professor

“Our graduates are in demand around the world, they are highly qualified specialists in the field of computer sciences, mathematics, physics, chemistry and ecology,” shares Director of the Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Doctor of Sciences (Physics and Mathematics), Professor Alevtina Keller. “One of their main advantages is the skill of project activity, which is based on big experience of the university’s interaction with employers. Those times when such interaction only included annual internships of students at certain enterprises have long gone. Today profile companies play a much more important role in training in-demand specialists.”

A great example of practice-oriented education is the collaboration of this SUSU Institute’s Department of Computational Mechanics with Russian Federal Nuclear Center – VNIITF (Zababakhin All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Technical Physics). This major state defense enterprise trains the Institute’s Bachelor’s students in Mechanics and Mathematical Modeling, and Master’s students in Applied Mathematics and Physics (Master’s program on Physical and Chemical Mechanics of Continua).

“The employees of Russian Federal Nuclear Center – VNIITF take part in compiling the content of special disciplines of our Institute, and the Nuclear Center itself provides students with an opportunity to perform their scientific-research and qualification works within its subdivisions and under guidance of the leading specialists,” continues Alevtina Keller. “Students are accommodated in a dormitory, they can use high-class equipment, library, technical and other documentation, what is crucial for successful performance of scientific-research and qualification works. The best graduates are guaranteed job placements.”

The Institute’s Department of Applied Mathematics and Programming collaborates with Compass Plus international company, one of the leaders in information technologies of financial industry. Jointly with students and young scientists of our university the company is fulfilling projects in the field of smart search methods in information systems, methods of authentication in the systems of mobile and Internet banking, and others. In the company’s Chelyabinsk branch the Department’s students take internships and pre-graduation training by participating in mini-projects following the enterprise’s requests. Compass Plus also organizes on-the-job training for students with possible future employment.

Students and postgraduates of the Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics are involved into work in scientific teams. This allows to make themes of term and diploma papers topical not only within Chelyabinsk, but also on the global scale. Solving of the topical scientific tasks allows students to develop their skills and master methods which employers are interested in. Postgraduate of the Faculty of Physics of the Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Ekaterina Anikina shares on this:

“While back at school I was interested in mathematics and physics. This influenced my choice of program when enrolling at SUSU. I appreciate that our university supports the undertakings of students and helps participate in various scientific events. During my Bachelor’s and Master’s studies I, individually and as part of the SUSU teams, participated and took prizes in a number of student Olympiads and contests on mathematics and physics at the all-Russian and international levels. At the Faculty of Physics both groups of experimental and theoretical researchers are working. When it was time for me to choose the topic of my research work, I opted for computer modeling of materials at atomic level. The work started during my Bachelor’s and Master’s studies I continued as a postgraduate at the Department of Computer Modeling and Nanotechnologies. Often students and postgraduates of the Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics present the obtained results at authoritative scientific events. Only in the recent three years I personally took part in conferences in Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Novosibirsk, Trieste (Italy), Kazan, Dubna, and Tomsk. Late in June I will go to London (Great Britain) to summer school Hermes 2018 on computer modeling of materials and scientific communication. Following the assessment of the results of the project which I performed at the SUSU’s Faculty of Physics I received an invitation for one-year internship at the oldest university of Sweden, Uppsala University, with the team of Professor Rajeev Ahuja.”

The results of many-year research works enrich the training process and even allow to open new educational programs. Thus, the scientific team of the SUSU Faculty of Physics staff has huge experience of creating new photocatalysts. Their developments turned to be in-demand, including by big enterprises. In 2018, to fulfill a joint project with Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works called “Nonchemical (Photocatalytic) Cleaning of Water from Pollutions Resistant to Oxidation”, the Institute will implement project education into Master’s program on Energy and Resource Saving Processes in Chemical Technology, Petro-chemistry and Biotechnology. As part of the project team Master’s students together with lecturers will be carrying out the required research. The complex character of the project implies also involving Master’s students from other Institute’s faculties: physicists for computation and modeling of hydrodynamic parameters, mathematicians for processing of scientific data and building mathematical models of processes. Once the laboratory experiments are complete, a whole number of the SUSU’s schools and institutes will need to participate. At the final stage of the project fulfillment it is planned to create a new high-technology enterprise for production of catalysts on an industrial scale.

“The Institute’s employees regularly and successfully fulfill big research projects. Before we also involved our students into solving topical fundamental and applied problems. The implementation of project education will allow to bring this work up to a whole new level,” notes Director of the SUSU Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

Graduates of the SUSU Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics are capable of solving most complex tasks of natural sciences, engineering, and economics through using computer technologies. The Institute releases talented programming engineers, business and web analysts, specialists in electronics and nanoelectronics.

SUSU Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics:
76 Lenin Prospect, Chelyabinsk;
Dean’s Office: Room 702 of the Main University Building;
Telephone: (351) 267-91-15;


Oksana Kuvakina; photo by: Oleg Igoshin
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