The Department of Chemical Engineering

ChairpersonSiboniwe Bhebhe

Chemical Engineering as a Profession

The United Kingdom Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) defines chemical engineering as: “the branch of engineering which is concerned with processes in which materials undergo a required change in composition, energy content or physical state; with the means of processing; with the resulting products and with their application to useful ends”In other words chemical engineers take chemistry out of the laboratory and into the factory and the world around us.Chemical engineering deals with industrial processes in which raw materials are converted into useful products. This means developing, designing and engineering both the complete process and equipment used in the production.The chemical engineer must choose the proper raw materials, operate the plant efficiently, safely and economically and ensure that the products meet the requirements set by industry. All over the world , chemical engineers are helping to advance and sustain our modern society. They manage natural resources, protect the environment and create and develop the processes that make the products we all depend on – pharmaceuticals, artificial fibres, plastics, food and drink, fuels and toiletries for example Thus chemical engineers draw on the chemical, physical and biological sciences and on mathematics to provide a systems approach to the understanding of the changes which take place in processes, from the molecular to the global scale, and to establish methods which can be employed to achieve required changes in composition, energy content, structure or physical state. Two of the most important industries in Zimbabwe are agriculture and mining. Agriculture provides people with food. Cash crops such as tobacco are major foreign currency earner. To produce high yields farmers need fertilizers and pesticides, which are manufactured in traditional plants using chemical engineering principles. The waste products from these industries are also treated by chemical engineers in the effluent treatment and recycling industries.

Bachelor of Engineering Honours Degree in Chemical Engineering

Entry Regulations
Entry to the programme is competitive and in many cases the holding of the minimum requirements will not ensure admission.

Structure of the Programme
The BEng (Hons) Programme requires full-time study over a period of five years. In each year, other than the Industrial Attachment Period, in order to be regarded as a full-time student, a student shall register for and attend a minimum number of courses. A Part is essentially a year of study. Each course is designated as Part I, II, III IV or V course.

Postgraduate Admissions

General Information

The department offers the degrees of M Phil and Ph D by research. Normal entry qualifications are an appropriate Honours degree class 2.1 or better, and thus far no exceptions have been made. Stipulated minimum periods of study are 2 years full-time or 3 years part-time for M Phil, 3 years full-time or 5 years part-time for Ph D. Only in very exceptional circumstances will a candidate be admitted directly to Ph D, but a facility exists to allow a transfer from M Phil to Ph D where appropriate. A candidate admitted to full-time study has no guarantee of financial support, and none is available at present. However in future the department will do its best to seek suitable scholarships, and will employ candidates as teaching assistants wherever possible. Any such support will be offered on a competitive basis

Departmental Staff

Siboniwe Bhebhe : Chairperson/Lecturer
  1. MSc (Chemical Engineering), WITS, Johannesburg, RSA 
  2. B.Eng (Hons) Chemical Engineering, NUST, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe 
PREVIOUS EMPLOYMENT : Hwange Colliery Company; University of the Witwatersrand
TELEPHONE: (landline plus extension or mobile): (09) 282842 Ext. 2607 / 2396.
  1. Coal and Carbon Technologies
  2. Carbon dioxide Capture and Storage Minerals Processing
  • International Workshop on Mineral Processing and Beneficiation (September 2014)Harare, Zimbabwe
  • International Conference on Coal Science and Technology (October 2009) Capetown, South Africa: Presentation Title: The Adsorption of Carbon Dioxide by Different Coal Macerals.
  • International Energy Agency: Carbon dioxide Capture and Storage Interdisciplinary Summer School (2008)Vancouver, Canada.
  • International Pittsburgh Coal Conference (September 2007) Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa. Poster Title: The Effect Of Coal Macerals On Carbon dioxide Adsorption.
  • Fossil Fuel Foundation of Africa (Conference) Carbon Capture and Storage in South Africa (February 2008)Glen Hove Conferencing, Johannesburg, South Africa; Presentation Title: The Effect Of Different Coal Compositions on Carbon dioxide Adsorption.
PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS :  Member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers
© 2017 NUST. All Rights Reserved.