Greetings from Asia!

Anna is currently halfway through her 3 months internship at Dong Hwa University in Taiwan. She is working in the A113 lab, run by Prof. Yen Pei Fu. During her internship, Anna is performing electrochemical studies on photocatalysts synthesized by her, along with XPS, UV-Vis DRS and TRFL measurements. This will all be a part of a manuscript on LDH/GCN heterojunctions for the photodegradation of estrone, which is currently under construction 😉

Apart from working hard, Anna admires the beauty of Taiwan’s nature, tries to taste as many new dishes as possible, and enjoys the weather, which is certainly more pleasant than the one currently in Krakow.


Exciting news! After months of hard work by Klaudia we’re thrilled to announce that our first publication regarding nanotubular clay-based photocatalysts has been just published. This is a part of PhD thesis carried out by Klaudia within Opus 22 project financed by National Science Centre Poland. Thank you to everyone who contributed. Check it out!


Missing the Italian sun and the delicious pizza as we have already returned from the EuroClay 2023 Conference held in Bari! It was a blast meeting old friends and making great new connections with fellow scientists.

A special shoutout to Ania, whose attendance was made possible by a well-deserved travel grant financed by AIPEA. And a proud moment for our group as Klaudia won the first prize for the best student oral presentation. Also, let’s not forget to acknowledge Jakub, who organized and chaired the session titled „Kaolin group minerals: from traditional applications to advanced functional nanomaterials for industry and environmental protection”.

As the conference season fades, we embrace the future with new ideas. Can’t wait to apply all that we’ve learned and continue further on our scientific journey.


Finally a paper in clay-related journal!

The publication resulted from a collaboration between Karolina and dr Barbora Böserle Hudcova, co-authored by Jakub and dr Mateusz Marzec. In this paper, we identified the mechanisms of V(V) adsorption by layered double hydroxides of different layer and interlayer chemistry. Part of the experiments were done during Karolina’s stay at the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague last year. Enjoy the paper by clicking the image below.


Heat and mosquitoes – visit to Sweden!

Jakub has visited Ångström laboratory at Uppsala University where he gave an invited talk at the 73rd Annual Meeting of the Nordic Microscopy Society (SCANDEM 2023) titled: Unraveling the structure-property relationship of adsorbents and photocatalysts derived from 2D layered materials of natural and synthetic origin. The session was chaired by Jarek Majka.

During the meeting latest trends and developments in microscopy focused on material science and biology have been discussed including: cryo-electron tomography, multidimensional TEM, crystal growth observed using real-time TEM, scanning helium microscopy and much more.

There was also time for meetings with a strong group working at Uppsala: Jarek, Julia, Iwona, Izzy and Simon.



Our group just got back from an amazing trip to Texas. During our stay, we participated in the 60th Annual Meeting of the Clay Minerals Society held at the University of Texas (Austin). Ania and Klaudia gave oral presentations on the results of their research obtained after the first year of their PhD, while Jakub presented a poster presentation on the synthesis and properties of kaolinite-based nanotubes. Ania’s stay in the US was partially financed by the CMS Travel Grant she obtained.

After the conference, we visited Texas A&M University in College Station. We had a tour around Dr. Youjun Deng’s labs, Materials Characterization Facility and Microscopy and Imaging Center at TAMU and had the opportunity to analyze some of our materials with the use of TEM.

During our stay, we also visited Space Center in Houston and other cool places in Texas, met a lot of inspiring people and ate loads of BBQ…:)


Good news alert!

We are happy to share that Klaudia’s master thesis ‘Hydrotalcite-zeolite mineral composites with dual adsorption properties’, supervised by Jakub, has received a distinction in the theoretical thesis category of AGH UST Diamonds (Diamenty AGH) competition. This contest for the best master thesis has been organized since 1998 by the Students’ Scientific Society (Studenckie Towarzystwo Naukowe) under the patronage of the Rector of AGH.

Congratulations to Klaudia! Keep an eye out for more updates about our achievements;)


We invite you to read a pop-science article (in Polish) regarding our ongoing project on photodegradation of mycotoxins.


Another outstanding piece of news!

We are delighted to share that Jakub has joined the Editorial Board of Applied Clay Science journal published by Elsevier!

We are sure that his expertise and passion in this field will greatly contribute to the journal and will be an exciting opportunity to review a variety of interesting publications.

More about the journal is here.


There is joy when first chromatographic peaks appear!

The new HPLC has arrived –> Shimadzu LC-2050C with UV-Vis and FLD detectors. This opens new possibilities and triggers new research ideas.

We thank the Shim-pol company for quick and smooth installation of the new toy.

We have already finished basic training and currently we are optimizing the HPLC for analyses of mycotoxins in the Opus 22 project funded by National Science Centre Poland.


Time to roll up 2022 as we have entered 2023!

Most importantly:

  • we have published 6 reviewed articles
  • finally after Covid-19 gone we have participated in 3 conferences: 17th International Clay Conference (Istanbul, Turkey), Goldschmidt 2022 (Honolulu, HI, USA) and 10th Mid-European Clay Conference (Kliczków, Poland)
  • a total of 12 abstracts were published and presented as 5 oral presentations (including 1 invited lecture) and 7 posters
  • Karolina has conducted research at Faculty of Environmental Sciences (Czech University of Life Sciences) -> paper in preparation
  • Dr. Youjun Deng (Texas A&M University) worked with us during his research stay at AGH (March-August 2022)
  • Jakub has received new research grant for 3 years (Opus 22 NCN)
  • Klaudia, Anna, Kinga and Agnieszka defended their MSc theses in July
  • Monika has received a scholarship from the Ministry of Education and Science for outstanding young scientists
  • Karolina received a PhD degree with distinction in October
  • Klaudia and Anna started their PhD studies in the AGH Doctoral School

We have more news to come in early 2023. Feel free to explore the website to find out more.

PS. The pile of boxes in the picture hides a new gift that arrived at the end of December -> more details to come soon.


We are pleased to announce that the latest publication of a member of our team has been published in the Polymer Degradation and Stability journal. In this work, Monika investigated the effect of different content of organo-montmorillonite on the thermal properties and degradation mechanism of polysiloxane nanocomposites. The studies were carried out using the TG/MS/FTIR technique, in which the exhaust gases from the thermogravimetric analyzer were simultaneously analyzed using mass spectrometry and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy.


We are pleased to present our new paper in the Journal of Water Process Engineering. If you want to learn about new materials effective in treating wastewater from the tanning industry, this is the right publication. In it, we have described LDH-smectite composites that have been tested in a number of Cr(III) and Acid Blue 129 dye removal experiments, as well as in a multi-component solution simulating tannery wastewater. Congratulations to Ania, for whom this is a first-author publication!


Karolina has successfully defended her PhD thesis on October 3rd. Today, the AGH Council for the Discipline of Earth and Environmental Sciences officially conferred Karolina’s doctoral degree and decided to distinguish her work! Karolina will continiue her work in the MBA Group, so stay in touch for the news on her new research path. Congratulations!


It is our pleasure to introduce new PhD students in our group. Klaudia and Ania decided to continue their scientific journey and from now on, they are working on new projects related to photocatalytic degradation of pollutants by functionalized layered materials under Jakub’s supervision. Good luck for the next few years of exciting research!


We have already came back from the 10th Jubilee Mid-European Clay Conference, which took place in a charming castle in Kliczków (Poland). The conference was a great opportunity to meet our friends from clay-community and discuss the recent findings. Jakub gave a plenary lecture on kaolinite madness, which showed modified kaolinite as a next-generation material. Karolina presented her work on interactions between layered double hydroxides and vanadates. Klaudia and Anna participated in many discussions by their posters devoted to zeolite-LDH and smectite-LDH materials with dual adsorption properties. This was the last conference this season for us. We were happy to show our work, meet our friends and network for future collaborations. Now we are peacefully returning to our labs, so we can share the newest findings next year.


We are happy to share with you a newly published paper on the removal of Safranin O and As(V) by LDH-zeolite heterocoagulated materials. In this work, we have used our custom-made setup of columns for dynamic adsorption. Kaolinite served as a precursor for a zeolite synthesis, and the composites were obtained via one-pot and coprecipitation routes. Congratulations to Klaudia on her first first-author publication, on which she worked hard during her M.Sc. studies. Visit Separation and Purification Technology Journal to learn about the efficiency and potential utility of LDH-zeolite composites.


Another great conference is behind us. We have recently presented our results at the XVII International Clay Conference in Istanbul (Turkey). Jakub gave a talk about “Surfactant intercalated smectite group minerals: the effect of host mineral and surfactant type on the styrene adsorption/desorption”, whereas Karolina “LDH-containing materials derived from minerals: from technical aspects of synthesis to the application in As(V) removal”. Karolina, Klaudia and Anna also took part in an unusual poster session, during which they had short presentations devoted to hydrotalcite-like materials.

The Istanbul conference not only resulted in many fascinating discussions, but also awards obtained by our students. Klaudia and Anna obtained travel grants financed by the Association Internationale Pour l’Étude des Argiles (AIPEA) and the Clay Minerals Society (CMS). Karolina received the student best poster award sponsored by the Organizing Committee and AIPEA.

Reminiscing the stunning views of the Bosphorus, we look forward to the last conference this season. Further updates will follow soon 😉


Aloha! We are just back from the Goldschmidt 2022 conference which was held on 10-15.07.2022 in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. Jakub and Karolina presented two posters on As(V) and (V) removal by various types of layered double hydroxides (sessions: “Geochemistry of arsenic in the environment: source, fate, and remediation” and “Surface water, groundwater, and soil pollution: sustainable water resources management and novel reactive materials for advanced remediation processes.”) and participated in many interesting discussions with geochemists from around the world. Karolina also chaired one of the oral sessions in the theme “Surface water, groundwater, and soil pollution: sustainable water resources management and novel reactive materials for advanced remediation processes.”. We have experienced breathtaking views of O’ahu mountains and Pacific Ocean. Now we are looking forward to the next conference.


Another success of our team member!

Monika received a scholarship from the Minister of Education and Science for outstanding young scientists who demonstrate significant achievements in scientific activity. The duration of the scholarship is 3 years. The scholarship was awarded in the field of Natural Sciences in the discipline of Earth and related environmental sciences.
In 2022, the Minister of Education and Science awarded scholarships to 215 young scientists, including 37 doctoral students from 47 scientific and artistic disciplines.

Congratulations and we wish Monika further success!


A few days ago we have been celebrating an important event in the MBA group. Our students successfully defended their MSc theses! After months in the lab, Agnieszka, Ania, Kinga and Klaudia have earned their well-deserved degrees. We have gained four talented graduates whom we wish every success and good luck in their careers!


The end of June is a perfect time to summarize our most crucial activities from the past six months. We haven’t been idle. Among the latest news, it’s worth highlighting that Jakub received funding from NCN National Science Centre Poland for the OPUS 22 project: Nanotubular materials based on kaolin group minerals for the photodegradation of selected mycotoxins in aqueous environment. Moreover, Jakub, as a 2019-2020 Fulbright scholarship holder, took part in the awarding diplomas ceremony that was organized in Warsaw at the end of May.

All group members accomplished a short course on Introduction to Quantitative XRD Analysis organized by Dr. Youjun Deng (Texas A&M University) and Jakub. What is more, we have conducted a series of meetings which were an ideal opportunity to discuss our recent research progress.

The collaboration of Karolina, Klaudia and Ania with the AGH Geological Student Research Group resulted in the presentation at the European Geosciences Union (EGU) General Assembly 2022 conference in Vienna. During this semester Klaudia, and Ania received travel grants awarded by Association Internationale Pour l’Étude des Argiles (AIPEA) and Clay Minerals Society (CMS). The financial support allows attending the XVII International Clay Conference, which will take place in Istanbul in July.

Klaudia, Ania, Kinga and Agnieszka finished their studies with fantastic results and are ready to defend their theses. Keep your fingers crossed!

The upcoming months will be very exciting for us, and we’ll tell you more about our summer initiatives soon:)


UPDATE -> Please find the information on the PhD position here.

New research grant will be launched this summer!

Jakub has received funding from National Science Centre Poland for the OPUS 22 project: Nanotubular materials based on kaolin group minerals for the photodegradation of selected mycotoxins in aqueous environment. Please check more information on our website here.

A PhD position in the project will be opened soon with deadline for applications in the second part of June. The scholarship will be awarded for 36 months (4 000 PLN/month) starting from August/September 2022. Please check our Facebook and LinkedIn profiles as more information will appear soon.

If you are interested please contact:


Skills upgrading in progress!

We have just finished a short course on Introduction to Quantitative XRD analysis organized by Dr. Youjun Deng (Texas A&M University) and Jakub. The course gathered 31 participants both from AGH and Texas A&M as well as other guests. Dr. Deng currently works at AGH University within Ulam scholarship financed by Polish NAWA agency. He has broad experience in QXRD and he shared his knowledge on fundamentals of Rietveld refinement method during 3 comprehensive lectures. The last part of the course was focused on practical use of Profex software. Now we can start to implement the gained knowledge in our research.


Recently, we received the news that Ania has been granted a CMS (Clay Minerals Society) travel grant! This grant will enable her to participate in the 17th International Clay Conference in Istanbul (Turkey). Ania’s poster presentation will cover the results of her MSc. thesis: Impregnation of smectite with layered double hydroxides of different chemistry for the simultaneous removal of Cr(III) and acid blue dye.


The experiments of our Master’s students are already at an advanced stage. Girls have spent long hours in the laboratory carrying out many experiments. The results of are so promising that their work will not just be over at the thesis stage. The girls have an intensive writing period ahead of them, and in a few months – the defenses!


Another great news in the MBA Group! Klaudia received a travel grant awarded by Association Internationale pour l’Étude des Argiles (AIPEA). The financial support allows to attend the 17th International Clay Conference in Istanbul (Turkey). Klaudia is going to present results of her MSc thesis devoted to hydrotalcite-zeolite heterocoagulated materials with dual adsorption properties.


Karolina is now halftime through her stay at Faculty of Environmental Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences. Under the supervision of Dr. Barbora Hudcová, Karolina investigates the V(V) removal mechanisms by layered double hydroxides. This involves many adsorption experiments as well as various modelling approaches.

Await the publication, because the results are very interesting!


To get the new year off to a good start, enjoy reading the article published in Journal of Cleaner Production in January.

Karolina and Jakub in cooperation with Mateusz Marzec from AGH Academic Centre for Materials and Nanotechnology described the adsorption properties of layered double hydroxides derived from magnesite. The huge number of hours in the lab translated into very interesting results. We investigated the removal of as many as six anions in several extensive experiments.


We did some great things this year in the MBA Group!

At a year-review (hybrid) meeting, we summarized all our activities in 2021. During this year, we have published 7 papers. Several topics were covered, including adsorbents (layered double hydroxides, modified smectites, sawdust) and montmorillonite-polysiloxane composites. We have attended conferences and workshops. Two of our projects funded by NCBiR and NCN were successfully closed. We had a great time meeting with research groups from Oulu University and Texas A&M University. With the new grant proposals submitted, an ongoing project, four MSc and one PhD projects to be completed, and new papers in preparation, we hope for the best in 2022.

Keep in touch with us, we already know how to kick off the new year!


Just published!
A new publication by Karolina and Jakub in cooperation with Michal Slaný from the Slovak Academy of Sciences was published in the Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering. The publication describes a simplified method for the synthesis of layered double hydroxides. Check it out!


In March 2022 Dr. Youjun Deng will join the MBA group! He has received a scholarship from NAWA within Ulam Programme and was chosen as one of 51 foreign scientists who will visit Poland to carry our research. Dr. Deng is an associate professor of soil mineralogy at Texas A&M University (USA).

His research is focused on the occurrence of soil and clay minerals in nature and under man-made conditions and the relationships between mineral structures and their functions e.g. 1) reactions of minerals with natural and synthetic organic, inorganic, and biological compounds of environmental and industrial importance, 2) mineral transformations and 3) civil engineering challenges.

He has been awarded nearly 5 million $ of research funds, published 66 reviewed articles, 5 book chapters and 1 book. His publications were cited over 1500 times and he has an h-index of 23. He has given 162 presentations (38 invited). Dr. Deng is an active and leading member in 5 societies including the Clay Minerals Society and Soil Science Society of America.

His research at AGH is aimed to select and to modify natural clay minerals and synthetic layered double hydroxides to detoxify zearalenone, one common toxic metabolite produced by fungi in crops, food and feed. Clay minerals such as montmorillonite and synthetic LDHs have been successfully used to remove aflatoxins and fumonisins. However, such an efficient binder for zearalenone is not known.


On 13-17.09.2021, Karolina participated in the 9th International Workshop on Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Clays and Clay Minerals organized in Höhr-Grenzhausen (Germany) by German-Austrian-Swiss Clay Group DTTG (Deutsche Ton- und Tonmineralgruppe). The most experienced scientists shared their knowledge!

The workshop covered the topics of clays, clay minerals and mixed layer minerals. The variety of methods used for the characterization of clays creates many opportunities in projects on mineral-based materials. The gained knowledge will definitely improve our research. It was great to meet all amazing clay scientists, share experience and do the networking.


Check out our scientific paper on the removal of styrene solvent by modified smectite clay minerals. Styrene is one of the most important industrial solvents. It is used in the production of e.g. polystyrene and polyester resins. Its emission needs to be controlled and this is possible through the use of adsorbents.


Time to sum up the summertime at MBA!

We have found the time for both work and rest. Our PhD Students, Karolina and Maciej participated in conferences and workshops, and ended up with awards for the best presentations. MSc students continued their research in the labs and presented their progress during meetings. We have also found the time for integration and altogether had a trip to Bolechowicka Valley.

Now, after the holidays, it’s time to prepare for a new academic year and further research. We’re ready for action!


After many online group meetings and with holidays approaching, almost the whole group gathered in one place. We had a great trip to Bolechowicka Valley, near Cracow. With one peek summited (excellent views, no supplementary oxygen!) and a nice walk, we well-deserved the pizza. No science was talked that day, but we enjoyed the trip as much as the youngest participants.


Today we share a little sneak peek of our research. Here, Klaudia is observing her materials under Scanning Electron Microscope. Under Jakub’s supervision, she performs experiments aimed at obtaining hydrotalcite-zeolite mineral composites with dual adsorption properties. The combination of zeolites and LDH results in a composite developed for effective, simultaneous removal of anions and cations from wastewaters. Within a year ahead of their graduation, all our MSc students are doing great job!


May was full of meetings perfect for discussing the results of our research!

We had a group meeting where Agnieszka and Kinga shared the progress of research in their master’s theses. We had a long and rich in interesting results meeting with a group from A&M Texas University. At the end of the month, Jakub gave a talk on minerals in technology for the WGGiOŚ AGH University of Science and Technology, and Karolina led a panel discussion at the Job Fair for PhD students WSForum organised by KRD. At the beginning of June, Mateusz gave a talk at the conference ‘Topical Issues of Rational Use of Natural Resources’ receiving a distinction.

Follow us on LinkedIn.



Howdy Aggieland! -> A&M Traditions

Another informal international meeting is behind us. This time we have met clay scientists from Department of Soil and Crop Sciences (Texas A&M University, USA).

Is it efficient to remove radionuclides by zeolites? Why some kaolinites are not reactive? How to modify smectites for use in polymer composites and for styrene removal? These were the main topics of the discussion.

Those who survived the over two-hour meeting are in the photo.

See you next time.


During our group meetings, students have a chance to get feedback from others on their research. On our last group meeting (11.05.2021) Agnieszka and Kinga shared with us the progress and newest results of their experiments for the MSc diploma under supervision of Jakub.

Agnieszka Giera -> Different approaches and efficiency of mineral adsorbents regeneration for zinc removal from aqueous solutions

Kinga Lis -> Synthesis of mineral adsorbents doped with transition metals for the removal of selected organic compounds from aqueous solutions

Agnieszka and Kinga, we keep our fingers crossed!

We have also welcomed our new members, Maciej and Eugeniusz!


We have just launched a new channel! Researchers, students, industrial representatives and our friends can now follow us on LinkedIn. We will be sharing our research and innovations and you will get the chance to know us better. Spread the news and let’s network together.


Say cheese!

Most exiting conferences have been canceled or postponed in 2021. So what? We decided to arrange our own mini-conferences. The first one gathered 19 participants from MBA group and our colleagues from Oulu University (Finland). We shared great ideas and insightful thoughts about the common areas of research.

Looking forward to meet Texas A&M group next month.


Remember Harshita? She worked in our labs in 2018. Recently we have published a paper on organic modification of sawdust and its application for vanadium removal. The paper appeared in open access.


Monika’s research within Miniatura project has been published in Spectrochimica Acta A. Follow the link to read more on the effect of organo-montmorillonite on cross-linking of polysiloxanes.


Paulina defended her PhD thesis successfully on 26th October via Covid-free online meeting. Congratulations and all the best for your scientific career!


Another paper published in 2021! This time Tomasz in collaboration with Drewniak & Dziewit group in Journal of Hazardous Materials (IF – 9.038).


Karolina’s paper on mineral-based synthesis of LDH has been published in Applied Surface Science Journal (IF – 6.182). It is our first publication in 2021!


The new pilot installation for adsorbents testing has arrived. We are moving forward with the first large-scale experiments in Tango 2 project!


Short pop-science article was published online regarding our work in the OPUS project which deals with LDH materials. It’s in Polish so beware.


Not only minerals…Monika has just published a paper on catalytic activity of polysiloxane networks. Check out in Journal of Applied Polymer Science.


Holding MBA meetings without breaking social distancing measures…a different kind of experience in the age of Covid-19.


How effective and stable are our adsorbents in dynamic systems? Is it possible to regenerate them? Is the use of our materials cost-effective? This is something we want to find out in Tango 2 project.


The past year has been one to remember. There were many successes, publications, new grants, new equipment and changes.

Most importantly:

+ 22 reviewed articles were published
+ 23 abstracts were published after 4 conferences with a total of 9 oral presentations
+ 3 new grants were obtained (Team-Net, Fulbright Senior Award, Miniatura)
+ 7 grants in total are ongoing
+ 3 special issues are handeled by Tomasz and Jakub
+ Ania received a PhD degree
+ Monika joined us as a new member
+ …

Feel free to explore the website to find out more.

We look forward to what we can accomplish together in the new decade!