Syllabus query

Academic Year/course: 2017/18

540 - Master's in Industrial Chemistry

60640 - Industrial Chemistry

Syllabus Information

Academic Year:
60640 - Industrial Chemistry
Faculty / School:
100 - Facultad de Ciencias
540 - Master's in Industrial Chemistry
Subject Type:

5.1. Methodological overview

The methodology followed in this course is oriented towards achievement of the learning objectives. A wide range of teaching and learning tasks are implemented, such as:

  • Theory sessions
  • Guided assignments and seminars
  • Visits to chemical companies and/or laboratories

Active participation of the students in the theory sessions and seminaries will be encouraged with questions, discussions and presentations of practical cases.

Visits to companies will be previously prepared with an explanation of the processes that will be known “in situ”.

The conferences by external specialists and related activities will be complemented with bibliographic material. Discussion involving the students will be encouraged.

All the learning tasks will be properly documented with bibliography and learning notes.

5.2. Learning tasks

The course includes the following learning tasks: 


Formative activity



% class attendance

Theory sessions



Autonomous work and elaboration

of assignments / essays 






Visits to companies 



Conferences by external specialists 






5.3. Syllabus

The course, Industrial Chemistry, will address the following topics:


General Aspects of the Chemical Industry

  • The chemical industry in Spain. Specific features of the chemical industry production. Environmental aspects.

General synthetic approaches to Industrial Chemistry

  • Raw materials. Commodities. Industrial catalyst. Chemical solvents. Prevention and safety in the chemical industry.

Industrial Inorganic Chemistry

The problematics of water

  • Requirementes regarding waters in relation to their use. The elimination of suspensions from waters. The softening of waters. The removal of cations from waters and demineralization of waters. The desalination of waters. Waters conditioning processes.

The industrial utilization of air

  • Physical separation of gases from the air: theoretical basis for liquefaction. The Linde process. The Claude process. The production of noble gases from air.

The industrial compounds of nitrogen

  • The synthesis of ammonia: the Haber-Bosch process. The industrial production of nitric acid: the Ostwald process. Modified processes. Applications. Hydrocyanic acid and cyanides. Hydrazines. Other derivatives.

The phosphorus industry

  • Phosphate minerals. The preparation of phosphorus. The phosphoric acid industry. Compounds derived from elementary phosphorus. Salts derived from phosphoric acid. The problem of phosphorus in the biosphere.

Sulphur and its principal compounds

  • The extraction of natural sulphur. The production of suphur from sulphuriferous gases, suphides and sulphates. Sulphur dioxide: production and uses. Sulphuric acid: the preparation by heterogeneous catalysis. Other sulphur products of industrial importance.

The chlorine-alkali industry

  • Chlorine and its industrial inorganic compounds. The inorganic fluorine industry. The minor halogens. Production of sodium and potassium, and related derivatives.

Carbon and silicon

  • Carbon natural sources. Chemical processes related to carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Inorganic carbon compounds for industrial use: carbonates and bicarbonates, the Solvay process. Uses and applications of carbonates. Silicon, silica and silicates. The silicon industry.


  • Production of alumina: the Bayer process. Production of aluminium: the Hall-Heroult process. Aluminium applications: light alloys. Recovery and recycling of aluminium.

Production of iron and steel.

  • The raw material of iron and steel making. The production of iron and steels. Corrosion techniques.

Other metals of industrial importance

  • Copper: properties and production. The metallurgy of lead. The metallurgy of zinc.

Industrial Organic Chemistry

Main sources of industrial organic chemical products

  • Petrochemistry: Separation of the components of natural gas. Petroleum distillation: fractions. Petroleum refining reations.
  • Carbochemistry: Coal processing as a source of raw materials for chemical industry.
  • Biotechnology in organic chemical industry.

Basic products in Industrial Organic Chemistry

  • Basic chemicals derived from natural gas and petroleum. Olefins: ethylene, propylene and C4 fraction. Aromatics: benzene, toluene and xylenes.
  • Chemicals from the C1 fraction: synthesis gas (CO + H2). Methane. Methanol. Formaldehyde. Other C1 derivatives.
  • Chemicals from coal: Acetylene. Aromatic derivatives from coke production.
  • Chemicals from renewable sources: Exploitation of biomass. Biofuels. Main chemicals from fats and oils. Main chemicals from carbohydrates. Introduction to fermentation products.

Industrial sectors of Organic Chemistry

  • Large scale production: commodities.
  • Fine chemistry.
  • One example of large scale production in organic chemical industry: Plastics. Polymer industry. Bioplastics.
  • One example of fine chemistry: Pharmaceutical industry. Features. Properties of drugs. Drug design. Future of pharmaceutical products.



  • Tensioactive agents.
  • Agrochemistry.
  • Regulations of industrial chemicals.
  • Selection criteria and synthetic routes for industrial products.
  • Patents and scientific publications.
  • Other topics

5.4. Course planning and calendar

Further information concerning the timetable, classroom, assessment dates and other details regarding this course, will be provided on the first day of class or please refer to the "Facultad de Ciencias" (Faculty of Science) website: