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Project title: Microbially assisted treatment of End-of-Life car catalysts to enhance economic regeneration recycling and recovery of precious metals

Acronym: MATCHER

Duration: 01/11/2020-01/10/2023

Project budget: € 304.122

ISMAR budget: € 15.806

Web site:

MATCHER develops basic and industrial research knowledge for the treatment of exhaust car catalysts (CEA) for the sustainable management of the corresponding value chain. Innovative methodologies will be developed in waste management and materials sciences by setting up a network of experts in chemical and mineralogical characterization and other disciplines such as microbiology and bio-metallurgy to experiment and validate CEA treatment processes. MATCHER proposes synergies between academy and research, industry, and local communities, with the aim of studying the performances of CEA treatment processes that include both physical/mechanical treatments and bio-extraction (metal extraction using microorganisms, primarily through marine extremophilic bacterial communities). Although still little explored for efficacy to treat catalytic converters, bioleaching and bio-extraction are well-established technologies and are also suitable for waste material and bioremediation purposes. Therefore, bio-assisted processes through marine biotic resources are evaluated and compared with traditional methods to favour technology transfer for the circular economy.

Contact person in ISMAR:


  • Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (Italy)
  • Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn (Italy)
  • Ecode (Italy)
  • Universita’ di Bologna (Italy)
  • Universita’ di Leoben (Austria)
  • Universita’ di Parma (Italy)
  • Universita’ di Nottingham (Uk)
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