Process Development, Peat and Natural Materials Research

The iTN brings together academics and scientists from the following institutions:

  • Zittau/Görlitz University of Applied Sciences,
  • IHI Zittau International Institute
  • HTW Dresden University of Applied Sciences.

Specialist areas

  • Process Technology, Natural Material Process and Processing Technology,
  • Geomechanics, Geotechnology, Soil Science
  • Chemistry, Chemical Analytics, Toxicology
  • Biotechnology, Biochemical and Biomedicinal Analytics, Genetic Technology
  • Computer Science and Ecology

Fields of activity

  • Peat and Natural Material Analytics and Characterization
  • Research into Peat Processing and Refinement
  • Research into Utilization of Natural Materials
  • Landfill Site Technology and Soil Substrata Research
  • Technology Research (Substance examination and determination, treatment of organic and inorganic dispersive substances / substance mixtures)



Since about 1999, researchers at HSZG have carried out a variety of R&D projects on the processing and refinement of peat for the creation of peat-based wellness and personal care products.

On account of the manifold ramifications of the project, an ever-increasing network of research contacts has emerged interlinking a variety of basic research specialists within and outside the University. In December 2005, after several years of successful and mutually fruitful interdisciplinary work, this culminated in the scientists and academics involved coming together and agreeing on the founding of an interdisciplinary and interinstitutional research institute.

After all necessary formalities had been met, the 'Institute for Research into Peat and Natural Materials' was duly established at HSZG by decree of the Senate on 19 June 2006.

Given the necessary and intended combination of pure research and application-oriented research, and with a view to the requirements of the industrial and commercial markets, it was subsequently agreed to expand the Institute to include the field of 'Process Development' as a link ensuring the practical, adaptive implementation of research results. Hence the iTN was renamed 'Institute for Process Development and Peat and Natural Materials Research (iTN)'.


The iTN's mission is to conduct research into the valuable substances present in peat and other natural materials, and into their processing and utilization, thus making an essential contribution to both research and further education on a regional, national and international plane. In order to ensure that this work remains praxis-oriented and in line with the needs, and that the applied R&D results are optimally implemented, the iTNmaintains close ties with a wide range of national and international institutions – in mining, commerce and industry, in the medical, balneological and spa sectors, with national and international research centres, and with higher education institutions, authorities and diverse other associations.


iTN [de]


Prof. Dr.-Ing.
Jürgen Schoenherr
Institut für Verfahrensentwicklung, Torf- und Naturstoff-Forschung (iTN)
Campus 02763 Zittau
Friedrich-Schneider-Straße 26
Building Z IX, Room 112
+49 3583 612-4804