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Duhok Polytechnic University

Duhok Technical College of Engineering

Dept: Petrochemical Engineering

Catalyst Science & Technology Lab.

𝟒𝒕𝒉 Year
Dr. Farhad & Mr. Mohammed

The science and technology of catalysis is great of
significance as it affects our daily life. Four major
sectors of the world economy involve catalyst
Catalysts and Catalysis
Catalyst is a substance that affects the rate of
chemical reaction but emerges from the process
Catalysis is the process of increasing the rate of a
chemical reaction by adding a substance known
as a catalyst.
Catalysis is the occurrence, study, and use of
catalysts and catalytic processes.
Activity and Selectivity
• Complete oxidation example (nonselective)
C2 H 4  3O2  2CO2  2H 2O

The adsorption of C2H4 and O2 onto the catalyst

Pt provides a chemical shortcut → reaction at
lower temperatures
• Partial oxidation example (selective)

C2 H 4  O2 
 CH 3CHO (aldehyde)
Both the net enthalpy (△H) and net free energy
(△G) are unaffected by the presence of the
catalyst. (and consequently the equilibrium
Types of Catalysis
 Heterogeneous catalysis
 Homogeneous catalysis
 Enzymes and biocatalysts
 Organocatalysis
 Electrocatalysts
 Nanocatalysts
 Tandem catalysis
 Photocatalysis
 Autocatalysis
Homogeneous vs. Heterogeneous Catalyst

Zeolite catalyst Catalyst powders

Homogeneous catalysis Heterogeneous catalysis

Single phase Multiphase
(Typically liquid) (Mostly solid-liquid and solid-gas)
Low temperature High temperature
Separations are tricky Design and optimization tricky
Enzyme & Biocatalyst
• Highly specific
• Highly selective
• Highly efficient
• Catalyze very difficult
– N2  NH3
– CO2 + H2O  C6H12O6

“TIM” • Works better in a cell
Cytochrome C Oxidase than in a reactor

Highly tailored “active sites”

Often contain metal atoms
Organometallic Complexes Catalyst
 2005 Noble Prize in
 Well-defined, metal-based
active sites
 Selective, efficient
manipulation of organic
functional groups
 Various forms, especially for
polymerization catalysis

 Difficult to generalize
beyond organic
In the context of electrochemistry, specifically in fuel cell engineering,
various metal-containing catalysts are used to enhance the rates of
the half reactions that comprise the fuel cell. One common type of
fuel cell electrocatalyst is based upon nanoparticles of platinum that
are supported on slightly larger carbon particles. When in contact
with one of the electrodes in a fuel cell, this platinum increases the
rate of oxygen reduction.

Nanocatalysts are nanomaterials with catalytic activities. They have
been extensively explored for wide range of applications. Among
them, the nanocatalysts with enzyme mimicking activities are
collectively called as nanozymes.

Tandem catalysis
In tandem catalysis two or more different catalysts are coupled in a
one-pot reaction.
Photocatalysis is the phenomenon where the catalyst can receive
light (such as visible light), be promoted to an excited state, and then
undergo intersystem crossing with the starting material, returning to
ground state without being consumed. The excited state of the
starting material will then undergo reactions it ordinarily could not if
directly illuminated. For example, singlet oxygen is usually produced
by photocatalysis.

In autocatalysis, the catalyst is a product of the overall reaction, in
contrast to all other types of catalysis considered in this article. The
simplest example of autocatalysis is a reaction of type A + B → 2 B, in
one or in several steps. The overall reaction is just A → B, so that B is
a product. But since B is also a reactant, it may be present in the rate
equation and affect the reaction rate. As the reaction proceeds, the
concentration of B increases and can accelerate the reaction as a
catalyst. In effect, the reaction accelerates itself or is autocatalyzed.