BME Vegyészmérnöki és Biomérnöki Kar

History of the faculty

The education of chemical engineers and chemists has a long-standing tradition in Hungary. Hungary’s earliest chemistry department was established in 1763 at the Selmecbánya Mining School, the first school to offer practical instruction in the chemical laboratory. In 1769, a common department for chemistry and botany was founded at the University of Nagyszombat, which was resettled to Buda in 1777 and later to Pest. In 1846, the Department of General and Technical Chemistry was founded at Joseph II Industrial School, one of the Budapest University of Technology and Economics’s predecessor institutions. Education of chemical engineers, separate from that of mechanical and civil engineers, reaches back to the 1863/64 academic year.

Royal Joseph Polytechnic became a technical university in 1871. The academic freedom introduced by this university-level status allowed students to freely select the subjects they wished to study. However, the need for an interrelated, logical sequence of subjects soon became evident, so in 1892 a compulsory curriculum and timetable was introduced. From the foundation of the Faculty until 1948, only a four-year-term of studies, without specialisations, was offered. Following the educational reforms of 1948, the departments of Inorganic Chemical Technology, Organic Chemical Technology, and Agricultural and Food Chemistry were established. The Inorganic Chemical Technology Department is no longer a part of the Faculty because in 1952 its tasks were taken over by the University of Chemical Industry in Veszprém. Further reforms in the 1960s extended chemical engineering studies to the MSc level and introduced the range of specialised studies identified below. A PhD program has also been established. Studies in English at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering began in the 1985/86 academic year.