Surface-science investigations have contributed significantly to heterogeneous catalysis in the past several decades. Fundamental studies of reactive systems on metal single crystals have aided researchers in understanding the effect of surface structure on catalyst reactivity and selectivity for a number of important reactions. Recently, model systems, consisting of metal clusters deposited on planar oxide surfaces, have facilitated the study of metal particle-size and support effects. These model systems not only are useful for carrying out kinetic investigations, but are also amenable to surface spectroscopic techniques, thus enabling investigations under realistic pressures and at working temperatures. By combining surface-science characterization methods with kinetic measurements under realistic working conditions, researchers are continuing to advance the molecular-level understanding of heterogeneous catalysis and are narrowing the pressure and material gap between model and real-world catalysts.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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