Institution name and department

Institute of Catalysis, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences

Position held


Research Professor



1113 Sofia, acad. G. Bonchev str.,  bl.11, Bulgaria



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in situ and ex situ characterization,

mechanochemical transformations,





relaxation phenomena



Areas of Research/Expertise

 The scientific topics of our research group are in the field of material science: 

- preparation, characterization and application of bulk and nanoscale materials;

- green and sustainable chemical processes;

- mechanisms and kinetics of catalytic reactions;

-                    chemical environmental problems;

-                    relaxation phenomena.

We use mechanochemistry as a method for synthesis and activation of advanced nanomaterials and catalysts with the aim to design mechanochemical protocols that can offer advantages over existing solution-based methods.

In order to follow and understand mechanochemical transformations in studied materials and to find out new synthetic procedures we combine different ex situ and in situ characterization methods: X-ray diffraction, Mössbauer spectroscopy, FTIR/DRIFT spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Thermal analysis, SEM, TEM, etc. 

5 Most representative publications related to mechanochemistry 

1.  P.Baláž, M. Achimovičová, M.Baláž, P. Billik, Z.Cherkezova-Zheleva, J.M. Criado, F. Delogu, I. Mitov, M.Tadej Rojac, A. Streletskiiand K. Wieczorek-Ciurowa, Chemical Society Reviews 42 (18) , pp. 7571-7637 (2013), Royal Society of Chemistry, London, 2013, ISSN:0306-0012, DOI:10.1039/c3cs35468g. ISI IF:30.425.

2.     Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.P., Zaharieva, K.L., Ivanov, I.B., Idakiev, V. D., Mitov, I.G.. Synthesis of improved catalytic materials for High-Temperature water-gas shift reaction. Croatica Chemica Acta, 88, 4, Croatian Chemical Society, 2016, ISSN:0011-1643, DOI:10.5562/cca2789, 475-480. SJR:0.224, ISI IF:1.19

3.     Kaneva, N., Bojinova, A., Papazova, K., Dimitrov, D., Zaharieva, K., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.,Eliyas, A.. Effect of thermal and mechanical activation on the photocatalytic efficiency of ZnO for drugs degradation. Archives of Pharmacal Research, 39, 10, Springer International Publishing AG, 2016, ISSN:0253-6269 (Print), DOI:10.1007/s12272-016-0789-6, 1418-1425. ISI IF: 2.49link

4.     Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Zaharieva, K.,Tsvetkov, M., Petkova, V., Milanova, M., Mitov, I..Impact of preparation method and chemical composition on physicochemical and photocatalytic properties of nano-dimensional magnetite-type materials. American Mineralogist, 100, 2015, ISSN:Print ISSN: 0003-004X, DOI:, 1257-1264. ISI IF: 1.964link

5.     Milenova, K., Zaharieva, K., Eliyas, A., Avramova, I., Stambolova, I., Blaskov, V., Dimitrov, O., Vassilev, S., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Rakovsky, S. Influence of mechanochemical activation оf metal-doped ZnO on its photocatalytic activity in degradation of Malachite Green dye. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, Special Issue C, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 112-117. ISI IF:0.201link

6.     Zaharieva, K., Rives, V., Tsvetkov, M., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Kunev, B., Trujillano, R., Mitov, I., Milanova, M.. Preparation, characterization and application of nanosized copper ferrite photocatalysts for dye degradation under UV irradiation. Materials Chemistry and Physics, 160, Elsevier B. V., 2015, ISSN:0254-0584, DOI:10.1016/j.matchemphys.2015.04.036, 271-278. SJR:0.818, ISI IF: 2.259link

7.     Zaharieva, K.,Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Kunev, B., Mitov, I., Dimova, S.. Impact of chemical composition on preparation of nanodimensional spinel ferrites. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, 1, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 261-267. ISI IF:0.349link

8.     Zaharieva, K., Milenova, K.,Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Dimova, S., Kunev, B., Eliyas, A., Mitov, I., Stambolova, I., Blaskov, V.. Effect of the duration of mechanochemical treatment on the photocatalytic activity under UV-light irradiation of nano-sized zinc oxide synthesized by precipitation. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, 1, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 342-347. ISI IF:0.201link

9.     Zaharieva, K., Milenova, K., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Eliyas, A., Kunev, B., Mitov, I.. Photocatalytic properties of ferrite/activated carbon composites for degradation of Malachite Green in aqueous medium. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, Special Issue C, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 99-104. ISI IF:0.201link

10.  Zaharieva, K., Milenova, K., Rives, V., Trujillano, R., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Eliyas, A., Tsvetkov, M., Kunev, B., Mitov, I.. Mixed cobalt-copper ferrite-type materials - synthesis and photocatalytic efficiency in degradation of Reactive Black 5 dye under UV-light irradiation. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, Special Issue C, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 105-111. ISI IF:0.201link

11.  Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z, Zaharieva, K., Buchkov, K., Blagoev, B., Mitov, I.. Effect of mechanochemical treatment on magnetic properties of nanodimensional magnetite-type materials. Acta Physica Polonica A, 126, 4, 2014, ISSN:0587-4246, DOI:10.12693/APhysPolA.126.912, 912-915. ISI IF:0.604link

12.  Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Paneva, D., Tsvetkov, M.,Kunev, B., Milanova, M., Petrov, N.,Mitov, I.. Preparation of improved catalytic materials for water purification. Hyperfine Interactions, 226, 1-3, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2014, DOI:10.1007/s10751-013-0976-5, 517-527. SJR:0.307link

13.  Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Paneva, D., Yordanova. I, Shopska, M., Kolev, H.. Mechanochemical Preparation and Properties of Nanodimensional Perovskite Materials. Acta Physica Polonica A, 126, Polish Academy of Sciences, 2014, ISSN:0587-4246, DOI:10.12693/APhysPolA.126.916, 916-920. SJR:0.273, ISI IF:0.53link

14. Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, K. Zaharieva, V. Petkova, B. Kunev, I. Mitov, Preparation and investigation of nanodimensional nickel ferrite, Bulgarian Chemical Communications,44, (2012) pp. 24-29,IF(2012)= 0.320.


5 Most representative publications non-related to Mechanochemistry

1.                   Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, D. Paneva, V. Petkova, J. Krstić, G. Stefanov, Rеuse of Fe-based amorphous alloys containing CRM: study on their temperature behavior, Hyperfine interactions, 2019, DOI: 10.1007/s10751-019-1684-6. ISI IF 0.61,  Q3.

2.                   M. Tsvetkov, M. Milanova, I. Ivanova, D. Neov, Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, J. Zaharieva, M. Abrashev, Phase composition and crystal structure determination of cobalt ferrite, modified with Ce, Nd and Dy ions by X-ray and neutron diffraction, Journal of Molecular Structure 1179 (2019) 233-241. link, ISI IF: 2.011.

3.                   Shopska, M., Paneva, D., Kolev, H., Kadinov, G., Briancin, J., Fabian, M., Kovacheva, D., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Mitov, I.. Comparative study of CO oxidation on biogenic lepidocrocite layered on anodic alumina samples. Reaction Kinetics, Mechanisms and Catalysis, 127, 1, Springer, 2019, ISSN:ISSN 1878-5190, DOI:10.1007/s11144-019-01587-9, 617-635. ISI IF:1.515   Q3

4.                   Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, D. Paneva, B. Kunev, H. Kolev, M. Shopska, I. Nedkov, Challenges at characterization of particulate matter – a case study, Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 50, F, 2018, 93-98. link , ISI IF:0.238.

5.                   Tzvetkov, M., Milanova, M., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Spassova, I., Valcheva, E., Zaharieva, J., Mitov. I.. Mixed Metal Oxides of the Type CoxZn1-xFe2O4 as Photocatalysts for Malachite Green Degradation Under UV Light Irradiation. Acta Chimica Slovenica, 64, 2, 2017, ISSN:1580-3155, DOI:, 299-311. ISI IF:0.983

6.                   Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, Paneva, D., Shopska, M., Ilieva, R., Iliev, M., Kovacheva, D., Kadinov, G.. Investigation of biogenic iron-containing nanoscale composite materials. Hyperfine Interactions, 239, 6, 2018, ISSN:0304-3843; 1572-9540, DOI:, SJR:0.528, ISI IF:0.549

7.                   D. Paneva, Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, V. Petkova, B. Kostova, H. Kolev, G. Avdeev, G. Stefanov, Investigation on crystallization and transformation processes in amorphous alloy Fe81B13.5Si3.5C2, Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 50, F, 2018, 38-41. link, ISI IF:0.238.

8.                   Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z, Shopska, M, Paneva, D, Kovacheva, D,Kadinov, G, Mitov, I. Comparative Study of Biogenic and Abiotic Iron-containing Materials. Hyperfine Interaction, 237, 2016, DOI:10.1007/s10751-016-1257-x, 56. SJR:0.305, ISI IF:0.347link

9.                   Shopska, M., Paneva, D., Kadinov, G., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.,Mitov, I., Iliev, M.. Study on the Composition of Biogenic Iron-Containing Materials Obtained Under Cultivation of the Leptothrix sp. on Different Media. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology, 181, 3, 2017, DOI:10.1007/s12010-016-2255-9, 867-883. ISI IF:1.606

10.                Shopska, M., Paneva, D., Kadinov, G., Kolev, H., Angelova, R., Iliev, M., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.,Mitov, I.. Formation of biogenic iron-containing single-component material by Leptothrix sp. cultivation. Comptes rendus de l’Acad´emie bulgare des Sciences, 70, 10, Prof. Marin Drinov Publishing House, BAS, 2017, ISSN:ISSN 1310-1331, 1379-1388. SJR:0.207, ISI IF:0.251

11.                Shopska, M., Paneva, D., Kolev, H., Kadinov, G., Ilieva, R., Iliev, M., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.,Mitov, I. Bioinspired synthesis of lepidocrocite-containing material and its catalytic behaviour in CO oxidation. Helvetica Chimica Acta, 100, 12, Wiley-VHCA AG, Zurich, Switzerland, 2017, ISSN:ISSN: 1522-2675, DOI: 10.1002/hlca.201700172, e1700172. ISI IF:1.138

12.                Yordanova, I. D., Todorova, S. Zh., Kolev, H. G., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z. P.. Co-Mn mixed oxide catalysts for purification of waste gases from n-hexane. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 49, Special Issue G, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Union of Chemists in Bulgaria, 2017, ISSN:0324-1130, 99-104. link, ISI IF:0.229

13.                Lazarova, T., Georgieva, M., Tzankov, D., Voykova, D., Aleksandrov, L., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Kovacheva, D.. Influence of the type of fuel used for the solution combustion synthesis on the structure, morphology and magnetic properties of nanosized NiFe2O4. Journal of Alloys and Compounds, 700, 2017, ISSN:0925-8388, DOI:10.1016/j.jallcom.2017.01.055, 272-283. ISI IF: 3.014

14.                Lazarova, T., Kovacheva, D., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.,Tyuliev, G.. Studies of the possibilities to obtain nanosized MnFe2O4 by solution combustion synthesis. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 49, G, 2017, 217-224. link, ISI IF:0.238

15.                Sergeeva, I., Kerestedjian, T., Nikolova, R., Cherkezova-Zheleva. Z., Gervilla, F.. Crystal chemistry and structural characterization of natural Cr-spinels. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 49, 2017, 7-20. ISI IF:0.238.

16.                Shopska, M, Paneva, D, Kadinov, G, Todorova, S, Fabian, M, Yordanova, I, Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z, Mitov, I. Composition and catalytic behaviour of biogenic iron containing materials in CO oxidation. Reaction Kinetics, Mechanisms and Catalysis, 118, 1, Springer, 2016, ISSN:1878-5190, DOI:10.1007/s11144-016-0989-6, 179-198. ISI IF:1.265link.

17.                Tsvetkov, M., Milanova, M., Pereira, L.C.J., Waerenborgh, J.C., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Zaharieva, J., Mitov, I.. Magnetic properties of binary and ternary mixed metal oxides NiFe2O4 and Zn0.5Ni0.5Fe2O4 doped with rare earths by sol-gel synthesis. Chemical Papers, 70, 12, 2016, ISSN:0366-6352, DOI:10.1515/chempap-2016-0097, 1600-1610. ISI IF:1.326link.

18.                Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z.P., Zaharieva, K.L., Ivanov, I.B., Idakiev, V. D., Mitov, I.G.. Synthesis of improved catalytic materials for High-Temperature water-gas shift reaction. Croatica Chemica Acta, 88, 4, Croatian Chemical Society, 2015, ISSN:0011-1643, DOI:10.5562/cca2789, 475-480. SJR:0.224, ISI IF:0.79link.

19.                Tsyntsarski, B., Stoycheva, I., Tsoncheva, T., Genova, I., Dimitrov, M., Petrova, B., Paneva, D., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Budinova, T., Kolev, H., Gomis-Berenguer, A., Ania, C.O., Mitov, I., Petrov, N.. Activated carbons from waste biomass and low rank coals as catalyst supports for hydrogen production by methanol decomposition. Fuel Processing Technology, 137, ELSEVIER, 2015, 139-147. SJR:1.571, ISI IF: 3.847link.

20.                S. Zh. Todorova, Z. P. Cherkezova-Zheleva, I. D. Yordanova, A. Ganguly, H. G. Kolev, S. Mondal, M. G. Shopska, K. K. Tenchev, N. I. Velinov, A. K. Ganguli, G. B. Kadinov. Nano-sized iron oxide with controlled size modified with Pd for purification processes. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, 1, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 424-430. SJR:0.144, ISI IF:0.229link.

21.                Tsvetkov, M., Zaharieva, K., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Milanova, M., Mitov, I.. Photocatalytic activity of nanostructure zinc ferrite–type catalysts in degradation of malachite green under UV-light. Bulgarian Chemical Communications, 47, 1, "Marin Drinov" Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2015, ISSN:0324-1130, 354-359. ISI IF:0.201link.

22.                Genova, I., Tsoncheva, T., Dimitrov, M., Paneva, D., Tsyntsarski, B., Ivanova, R., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Budinova, T., Kovacheva, D., Mitov, I., Petrov, N.. Cobalt ferrite nanoparticles hosted in activated carbon from renewable sources as catalyst for methanol decomposition. Catalysis Communications, 55, ELSEVIER, 2014, DOI:doi:10.1016/j.catcom.2014.06.013, 43-48. SJR: 1.081link.

23.                Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Paneva, D., Todorova, S., Kolev, H., Shopska, M., Yordanova, I., Mitov, I. Impact of active phase chemical composition and dispersity on catalytic behavior in PROX reaction. Hyperfine Interactions, 226, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2014, DOI: 10.1007/s10751-013-0977-4, 529-543. SJR:0.307, ISI IF:0.21link.

24.                S. Todorova, I. Yordanova, A. Naydenov, H. Kolev,Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, K. Tenchev, B. Kunev. Cobalt-Manganese Supported Oxides as Catalysts for Complete n-Hexane and Methane Oxidation: Relationship between Structure and Catalytic Activity. Rev Roum Chim, 59, 3-4, Editions de l'Academie Republique Populaire, 2014, ISSN:0035-3930, 259-265. SJR:0.202, ISI IF:0.311link

25.                Shopska, M., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Paneva, D., Petkova, V., Kadinov, G., Mitov, I.. Treatment of biogenic iron-containing materials. Croat. Chem. Acta, 87, 2, Croatian Chemical Society, 2014, ISSN:0011-1643, 161-170. ISI IF:0.728link

26.                Tsoncheva, T., Genova, I., Tsyntsarski, B., Dimitrov, M., Paneva, D., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Budinova, T., Ivanova, R., Mitov, I., Petrov, N.. Cobalt and iron modified activated carbon from coal tar pitch: preparation and application as catalysts for methanol decomposition. Journal of Porous Materials, 21, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2014, 503-512. SJR:0.437link

27.                T. Tsoncheva, I. Genova, B. Tsintsarski, M. Dimitrov, D. Paneva, Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, I. Yordanova, G. Issa, D. Kovacheva, T. Budinova, H. Kolev, R. Ivanova, I. Mitov, N. Petrov, Transition metal modified activated carbons from biomass and coal treatment products as catalysts for methanol decomposition. Reaction Kinetics, Mechanisms and Catalysis, 110, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2013, ISSN:1878-5190, DOI:10.1007/s11144-013-0612-z, 281-294. SJR:0.406,IF(2012)= 1.104.

28.                M. Shopska, Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, D. Paneva, M. Iliev, B. Kadinov, I. Mitov, V. Groudeva, Biogenic iron compounds: XRD, Mossbauer and FTIR study. Central European Journal of Chemistry, 11(2) 2013, 215-227, Central European Science Journals, ISSN:1895-1066, DOI: 10.2478/s11532-012-0148-5. ISI IF:1.329.

29.                S. Dimova, K. Zaharieva, Ch. Jossifov, Z. Cherkezova-Zheleva, I. Mitov, Metathesis of Phenylalkynes and Aldehyde by Nanodimensional Ferrite Catalyst, Journal of Chemical Technology and Metallurgy, 48 (1) (2013) 28-33, ISSN: 1314-7471 (print); ISSN: 1314-7978 (on line). SJR (Scopus)=0.167/0.142 ; SNIP = 0.285. link

30.                Banić, N., Abramović, B., Krstić, J., Šojić, D., Lončarević, D., Cherkezova-Zheleva, Z., Guzsvány, V., Photodegradation of Thiacloprid Using Fe/TiO2 as a Heterogeneous Photo-FentonCatalyst, Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, 107 (3-4) (2011), pp. 363-371. IF(2011)= 5.625. link


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Google Scholar

ResearcherID: L-3579-2016


Zara Zheleva

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Author ID: 9939024200

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Zara Zheleva



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Primary focus in mechanochemical research(enter as bullet points)

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  • Université de Montpellier & Institut Charles Gerhardt de Montpellier (UMR 5253)
    c/o 8, Rue de l’Ecole Normale
    34296 Montpellier, Cedex 5 (France)

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COST Overview


EU COST is supported by the EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020.



COST Action CA18112