Prof. Yael Mishael

Head of Department

Google Scholar Profile


2005 - Postdoctoral Fellowship. Colloids at Surfaces. Dept. of Chemistry, Indiana University-Purdue University, USA
2003 - Ph.D. Physical Chemistry of Soil. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
1999 - M.Sc.Agr. Soil Chemistry. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
1996 - B.Sc. Chemistry and Structural Molecular Biochemistry. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Research Interests:

Colloid and interface science
Environmental chemistry
Polyelectrolyte adsorption on siliceous surfaces
Clay composites for water treatment
Herbicide clay based formulations

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Designing and employing organic-inorganic sorbents

My scientific interests within the fields of soil chemistry and mineralogy center on colloid and interface phenomena. My approach has been to conduct basic science studies which serve as a basis for environmental application-oriented research.

My expertise is modifying clay surfaces to design optimized sorbents which in turn efficiently bind pollutants. The modification is achieved by adsorbing organic molecules as monomers, micelles or polymers on the clay surface. I focus on characterizing these clay composites and studying the interactions within the composite (clay surface and modifiers) and the interactions of pollutants with these composites.

Pollutant uptake by polycation-clay composite sorbents for water treatment

We develop novel polymer-clay composite sorbents for the removal of pollutants from water. The guiding hypothesis is that pollutants will bind with high affinity to polymer-clay composite sorbents based pollutant-polymer molecular compatibility. Due to pollutant-sorbent compatibility the filtration by such sorbent columns is more efficient than the filtration by common granulated activated carbon (GAC) columns.

Catalytic polymer-clay composite for enhanced removal and degradation of diazinon (Shabtai and Mishael, Journal of Hazardous Materials. 2017)



Efficient Filtration of Effluent Organic Matter by Polycation-Clay Composite Sorbents: Effect of Polycation Configuration on Pharmaceutical Removal (Shabtai and Mishael ES&T, 2016)



Environmentally friendly Pesticide formulations based on micelle-clay composites

We have been developing for several years slow release formulation for herbicides based on micelle-clay composites. Bioassays show that these formulations not only significantly reduced herbicide leaching but also enhanced weed control in comparison to commercial formulations, indicating that these innovative formulations are environmentally promising. Furthermore we have demonstrated the efficiency of such formulation to reduce root penetration in drip irrigation systems.

Reduced Herbicide Leaching by in Situ Adsorption of Herbicide−Micelle Formulations to Soils (Katz and Mishael. JAFC, 2015)



Development and Employment of Slow-Release Pendimethalin Formulations for the Reduction of Root Penetration into Subsurface Drippers (Zait et al., 2015)



Bio-clays: interactions and activity

PEG-PE/clay composite carriers for doxorubicin: Effect of composite structure on release, cell interaction and cytotoxicity (Kohay et al. Acta Biomaterialia, 2017)



Pollutant fate in the environment – soil wetting and drying

We (collaboration with Dr. Emanuel HUJI) aim to quantify the effect of wetting and drying cycles on soil structure and consequently on pollutant fate in the soil by employing advanced laser granulometry and X-ray micro-tomographic imaging (micro-CT) measurements



Ph.D. Students


2013 - present: Maoz Dor (direct PhD track), co-supervisors – Dr. Simon Emanuel "Advanced micro-soil structure characterization"


Adi Radian Technion, Assistant Professor Environmental, Water and Agricultural Engineering

2011-present: Hagay Kohay – Interactions of pharmaceuticals with designed composites based on random- and diblock- polymers adsorbed to clay

2012-present: Ido Gardi - Developing regenerable sorbents based on polymer-clay composites for the removal of triazine herbicides from water.

2014-present: Itamar Shabtai – Integrating technologies for advanced treatment of persistent organic pollutants from treated wastewater effluent



2014 - present Arbel Breznik, co-supervision – Dr. Uri Nachshon

2016 - present Amir Peretz

2016 - present Ofri Zusman


2012 – 2015 Rebbeca Chotzen, co-supervisors – Prof. Benny Chefetz

2014 – 2017 Lior Levi

2011-present: Rebbeca Chotzen - A Systematic Study on humic acid adsorption - Direct and indirect effects of seven clay minerals.

2013-present: Maoz Dor – Effect of wetting and drying cycles on micro-scale mechanical properties of Soils.

2014-present: Lior Levi - Developing polymer-clay composites for the removal of pharmaceuticals from water.

Former Students

Ph.D. Students

2005-2011: Dikla Zadaka-Amir - Sorption of organic compounds by silicate-immobilized micelles: mechanisms and application to waste and groundwater treatment. (co-supervisor, Prof. Shlomo Nir). Present Employment: Head of R&D Startup company – developing membranes for water treatment

2008-2013: Adi Radian - Developing and applying macromolecule-clay composites for the removal of pollutants from water. (co-supervisor, Prof. Rachel Nechustai) Employment: Postdoctoral fellow at University of Minnesota


2005-2008: Adi Radian - Polycation-clay nanocomposites as a basis for herbicide controlled release formulations (summa cum laude). Present Occupation: Postdoctoral fellow.

2006-2008: Dana Ziv - Adsorption of herbicides solubilized in micelles on montmorillonite as a base for herbicide controlled release formulations. Present Employment: The Israeli Water Authority.

2006-2009: Ronit Ganigar - Polycation-clay nanocomposites for treatment of contaminated water. Present Occupation: Self-employed Organic Store.

2007-2009: Osnat Goldreich - Effect of wetting and drying of soils on sorption and degradation of metolachlor.(summa cum laude). Present Employment: Mekorot, Israel's National Water Company

2008-2010: Nimrod Bleiman - Developing polymer-clay composites for the removal of selenium from water. (summa cum laude). Present Employment: The Israel Ministry of Health.

2007-2011: Michal Carmeli-Levi - Applying clay composites for the removal of organics from treated water.

2008-2012: Haim Katz - Developing and applying sulfentrazone-micelle controlled release formulations. Present Occupation: PhD student at Arial University

2010-2013: Yifat Zait - Reducing root penetration in drip irrigation systems by applying controlled release herbicide formulation through the system. Present Occupation: Developing educational programs

2011-2014: Noam Duhl - Developing and applying micelle-clay controlled release Present Occupation: PhD student at Hebrew University


71024: Physical Chemistry

Instructor: Dr. Yael Mishael

Course Level: undergraduate
Thermodynamic principles. The First and Second laws. Partial molar quantities. Chemical potential in ideal systems. Real systems. Osmotic pressure. Gibbs-Durham equation. Phase rule. Electrochemistry. Electrochemical cells. Average activity coefficients. Debye-Huckel theory (outline).Transport processes. Electrolytic conductivity. Viscosity. Diffusion. Selected topics in chemical kinetics. 

71615: Soil Formation

Instructor: Dr. Yael Mishael

Course Level: undergraduate
The course covers basic soil characterization, physical and chemical weathering, and products of soil weathering. It describes the five factors of soil formation; parent material, topography, biological, climate and time. In addition, the course covers soil classification. The classification, formation and the agricultural aspect of Israeli soils are emphasized. 

71614: Proseminar

Instructor: Dr. Yael Mishael

Course level: undergraduate
The course aims to guide the student how to prepare a coherent, comprehensive and interesting seminar. The lectures focus on accessing and selecting scientific data, processing the data, integrating data from different sources, and presenting a topic based on the information collected to an audience. The students are required to present a seminar to the class based on scientific papers they selected and write an abstract of their talk. 

71973: Physical Chemistry and Surface Phenomena in Soils

Instructor: Dr. Yael Mishael

Course Level: graduate
The course describes the soil system and its components, and the structure of soil minerals focusing on oxides and clay minerals. The course deals in detail with inorganic soil surface phenomena including adsorption, compensation, cation exchange and flocculation. The electric double layer model and the basic adsorption models are developed. The course focuses on new developments in soil colloids and interface science i.e., discussing recent publications in scientific journals. Furthermore, the student will write a mini-proposal in the scope of the course which they execute during the lab sessions and present it to the class. 

73504: Environmental Science Seminar

Instructor: Dr. Yael Mishael

Course level: graduate


Google Scholar

Recent Publications

Lelario F., Gardi I., Mishael Y.G., Dolev N., Undabeytia T., Nir S., Scrano L. and Bufo S.A. (2017). Pairing micropollutants and clay-composite sorbents for efficient water treatment: Filtration and modeling at a pilot scale. Appl. Clay Sci. 137:225-232. [View Paper]

Gerchman Y., Vasker B., Tavasi M., Mishael Y.G., Kinel-Tahan T., and Yehoshua Y. (2017). Effective harvesting of microalgae: Comparison of different polymeric flocculants. Bioresource Technology. 228:141-146. [View Paper]

Kohay H., Sarisozen C., Sawant R., Jhaveri A., Torchilin V., MishaelY.G. (2017) PEG-PE/Clay Composite Carriers for Doxorubicin: Effect of Composite Structure on Release, Cell Interaction and Cytotoxicity. Acta Biomaterialia. [View Paper]

Shabtai I.A., and Mishael Y.G. (2017) Catalytic polymer-clay composite for enhanced removal and degradation of diazinon. J. Hazard Mater. 335: 135–142. [View Paper]

Shabtai I.A., and Mishael Y.G. (2016) Efficient Filtration of Effluent Organic Matter by Polycation-Clay Composite Sorbents: Effect of Polycation Configuration on Pharmaceutical Removal. Environ. Sci. Technol. 50: 8246-8254. [View Paper]

Chotzen R., Polubesova T., Chefetz B. and MishaelY.G. (2016). Adsorption of Soil-Derived Humic Acid by Seven Clay Minerals: A Systematic Study. Clay and Clay Minerals. 64: 628-638. [View Paper]

Kohay, H., Izbitski, A., Mishael, Y.G., 2015. Developing Polycation-Clay Sorbents for Efficient Filtration of Diclofenac: Effect of Dissolved Organic Matter and Comparison to Activated CarbonEnviron. Sci. Technol. 49: 9820-9288. [View Paper

Radian A., Fichman M. and Mishael Y., Modeling Binding of Organic Pollutants to a Polycation-Clay Sorbent Using Quantitative Structural-Activity Relationships (QSAR)Applied Clay Science. 116-117:241-247. [View Paper]

Gardi I. , Nir S. , Mishael Y.G. (2015) Filtration of triazine herbicides by polymer-clay sorbents: coupling an experimental mechanistic approach with empirical modeling. Water Research. 70: 64-73. [View Paper]

Pentrák M., Pentráková L., Radian A., Mishael Y.G., and. Stucki J.W. (2015) Nitrate reduction by redox-modified smectites exchanged with chitosan. Clay and Clay Minerals [View Paper]

Zait Y., Segev D., Schweitzer A, Goldwasser Y., Rubin B., Mishael Y.G. (2015) Development and employment of slow release pendimethalin formulations for the reduction of root penetration into drip-irrigation. J. Agri. Food Chem. [View Paper]

Zadaka-Amir D., Bleiman N., Mishael Y.G. 2013Sepiolite as an effective natural porous adsorbent for surface oil-spill. Microporous Mesoporous Mater. 169:153-159. [View Paper]

Benor M., Levy G.J., Mishael Y.G. and Nadler A.2013Salinity effects on the Fieldscout TDR 300 soil moisture meter readings. Soil Science Society of America Journal. 2: 412-416. [View Paper]

Galán-Jiménez M.C., Mishael Y.G., Nir S., Morillo E., Undabeytia T. 2013Factors affecting the design of slow release formulations of herbicides based on clay-surfactant systems. A methodological approach. PLOS ONE. 8: e59060 [View Paper]

Katz H. and Mishael Y.G. 2013 Reduce Herbicide Leaching by in situ Adsorption of Herbicide-Micelle Formulations to Soils. J. Agri. Food Chem. 8: 50-57. [View Paper]


Su K. Radian A. Mishael Y.G., Yang L., and Stucki J.W. 2012Nitrate reduction by polymer-exchanged, redox-activated ferruginous smectite composites. Clay and Clay Minerals. 60: 464–472. [View Paper]

Zadaka-Amir D., Bleiman N., Mishael Y.G. 2012Sepiolite as an effective natural porous adsorbent for surface oil-spill. Microporous Mesoporous Mater. 169:153-159. [View Paper]

Radian A. and Mishael Y.G. 2012Effect of humic acid on pyrene removal from water by polycation-clay mineral composites and activated carbon. Environ. Sci. Technol. 46: 6228-6235. [View Paper]

Zadaka-Amir D., Nasser A., Nir S and Mishael Y.G. 2012 Removal of Methyl tertiary-butyl ether (MTBE) from Water by Polymer-Zeolite Composites. Microporous Mesoporous Mater. 15: 216-222. [View Paper]

Radian A., Carmeli M., Zadaka-Amir D., Nir S., Wakshal E., Mishael Y.G. 2011 Enhanced removal of humic acid from water by micelle-montmorillonite composites: Comparison to granulated activated carbon. Appl. Clay Sci. 54: 258-263. [View Paper]

Goldreich O., Goldwasser Y., Mishael Y.G. 2011 Effect of soil wetting and drying cycles on metolachlor fate applied as a commercial or as a controlled release formulation. J. Agri. Food Chem. 59:645-653. [View Paper]

Zadaka, D., Radian, A. and Mishael Y.G. 2010Applying zeta potential measurements to characterize the adsorption of organic, micelle-forming and polymeric cations on montmorillonite. J. Colloid Interface Sci. 352:171-177. [View Paper]

Bleiman N. and Mishael Y.G. 2010Selenium removal from drinking water by filtration: Development and employment of chitosan-montmorillonite clay composites and oxides. J. Hazard Mater. 183:590-595. [View Paper]

Ganigar R., Rytwo G., Gonen Y., Radian A. and Mishael Y.G. 2010Developing polymer-clay nanocomposites for the removal of trichloro- and trinitro-phenol from water. Appl. Clay Sci.49:311-316. [View Paper]

Radian A., Michaeli D., Serban C., Nechushtai R. and Mishael Y. G. 2010Bioactive apo-ferredoxin-polycation-clay composites for iron binding. J. Mater. Chem. 20:4361–4365. [View Paper]

Zadaka, D., Nir, S., Radian, A. and Mishael, Y.G. 2009Atrazine removal from water by polycation-clay composites: effect of dissolved organic matter and comparison to activated carbon. Water Research 42:1511-1516. [View Paper]

Ziv, D. and Mishael, Y.G. 2008Herbicide solubilization in micelle-clay composites as a basis for controlled release sulfentrazone and metolachlor formulations. J. Agri. Food Chem.56:9159-9165. [View Paper]

Radian, A. and Mishael, Y.G. 2008Characterizing and designing polycation-clay nano-composites as a basis for imazapyr controlled release formulations. Environ. Sci. Technol.42:1511-1516. [View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G., Dubin, P.L., deVries, R. and Kayitmazer, A.B. 2007Effect of pore size on adsorption of polyelectrolyte to porous glass. Langmuir 23:2510-2516. [View Paper]

Zadaka, D., Mishael, Y.G., Polubesova, T., Serban, C. and Nir, S. 2007. Modified silicates and porous glass as adsorbents for removal of organic pollutants from water and comparison with activated carbons. Appl. Clay Sci. 36,174-181. [View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G. and Dubin, P.L. 2005.Uptake of organic pollutants by silica-polycation immobilized micelles for water remediation. Environ. Sci. Technol. 39,8475-8480. [View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G. and Dubin, P.L. 2005Toluene solubilization induces different modes of mixed micelle growth. Langmuir 21, 9803-9808. [View Paper]

Zadaka, D., Polubesova, T., Mishael, Y.G., Spitzy, A., Koehler, H., Rabinovitz, O. and Nir, S. 2005Determination of release of organic cations from micelle-clay complexes and their re-adsorption in sand/clay columns. Appl. Clay Sci. 29, 282-286. [View Paper]

Undabeytia, T., Mishael, Y.G., Nir, S., Rubin, B., Papahadjpoulos-Sternberg, B., Morillo, E. and Maqueda, C. 2003A novel system for reducing leaching from formulations of anionic herbicides: clay-liposomes. Environ. Sci. Technol. 37, 4475-4480. [View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G., Undabeytia, T., Rabinovitz, O., Rubin, B. and Nir, S. 2003Sulfosulfuron incorporation in micelles adsorbed on montmorillonite for slow release formulations. J. Agri. Food Chem. 51, 2253-2259. View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G., Undabeytia, T., Rabinovitz, O., Rubin, B. and Nir, S. 2002Slow release formulations of sulfometuron incorporated in micelles adsorbed on montmorillonite. J. Agri. Food Chem. 50, 2864-2869. [View Paper]

Mishael, Y.G., Undabeytia, T., Rytwo, G., Papahadjopoulos-Sternberg, B., Rubin, B. and Nir, S.2002Sulfometuron incorporation in cationic micelles adsorbed on montmorillonite. J. Agri. Food Chem. 50, 2856-2863. [View Paper]

Nennemann, A., Mishael, Y.G., Nir, S., Rubin, B., Polubesova, T., Bergaya, F., Van Damme, H. and Lagaly, G. 2001Clay-based formulations of metolachlor with reduced leaching. Appl. Clay Sci. 18, 265-275. [View Paper]

El-Nahhal, Y., Undabeytia, T., Polubesova, T., Mishael, Y.G., Nir, S. and Rubin, B. 2001Organo-clay formulations of pesticides: reduced leaching and photodegradation. Appl. Clay Sci. 18, 309-326. [View Paper]




Nir, S., Y. El-Nahhal, T. Undabeytia, G. Rytwo, T. Polubesova, Y. Mishael, O. Rabinovitz and B. Rubin. 2006Clays and Pesticides. In: Handbook of Clay Science. F. Bergaya, B.K.G. Theng and G. Lagaly (eds.) pp. 677-691. Elsevier Science Publisher .




Nir, S., Rubin, B., Mishael, Y., Undabeytia, T., Rabinovitz, O., Polubesova, T., Patent:WO 02/052939 A1. [View Paper]

[Full publication list]

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