Chemical Adsorption on Zeolite Catalysts

Surface acid site characterization is an essential step for the design, development, and quality control of successful zeolite-based catalysts. Temperature programmed methods (TPX) provide fast, precise, and safe screening for catalysts. In particular, the use of ammonia temperature programmed desorption (TPD) for the evaluation of Brønsted and Lewis acid sites on zeolites and related materials is discussed.


One of the most important properties of commercial zeolites is their ability to act as solid-acid catalysts. This property, in tandem with their distinct pore size and shape, is driving multi-billion dollar industries in making synthetic household and industrial products. Zeolites can be made multi-functional by incorporating metals to enhance their catalytic properties and/or the pore structure can be tailored to achieve size or shape selectivity and suppress undesirable product formation. Any alterations to the original zeolite may affect the acid (catalytic) sites. Given the tremendous importance of acid sites (distinguished as Brønsted or Lewis) on catalyst performance, quantification and understanding of the acid sites is of the utmost importance. The number and type of acid site, strength, and distribution can be determined by temperature programmed chemisorption methods (TPX) using the ChemBET Pulsar and autosorb iQ-C instruments. 

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