Studying, Promoting, Exploiting, and Predicting Catalyst Dynamics: the Next Frontier in Heterogeneous Catalysis

Steven Chavez, Baraa Werghi, Kenzi M Sanroman Gutierrez, Ruitian Chen, Supriya Lall, Matteo Cargnello
Year of publication: 
Journal of Physical Chemistry C

Developing heterogeneous catalysts involves continuous efforts in understanding and designing active sites with improved performance for various applications. In recent years, the recognition and appreciation of the dynamic nature of active sites has permeated the field, leading to renewed efforts in describing dynamic phenomena and exploiting them to go beyond classical barriers of catalyst performance. The challenges in this field are daunting, yet the rewards could lead to new classes of catalysts that outperform traditional systems for critical chemical transformations at the industrial scale. Furthermore, a deeper understanding of the dynamic nature of active sites can lead to fundamental knowledge of practical importance in the field. In this Perspective, we highlight this emerging area of catalysis science using recent examples to motivate the importance of understanding the dynamic nature of heterogeneous catalysts. We predict that this area of study will continue to expand, eventually allowing us to exploit dynamics to control catalytic performance in numerous applications.

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