Issue 90, 2017

Neutron spectroscopy as a tool in catalytic science


Catalytic science currently has access to a range of advanced experimental methods for the study of molecular behaviour in chemical processes. Neutron spectroscopy, however, is uniquely placed to gain detailed insight into such systems, particularly through techniques such as vibrational spectroscopy with neutrons (INS) which gives access to vibrational modes unavailable to conventional spectroscopy techniques, and quasielastic neutron scattering (QENS) which studies molecular motion on a range of timescales. The present article illustrates the role of these techniques in advancing the field of catalysis. We first provide a brief introduction to the basic principles of the techniques, and then discuss their use in the study of three key catalytic systems: the behaviour of hydrocarbons confined in zeolite catalysts; the methanol-to-hydrocarbons process; and methane reforming. We demonstrate the importance of neutron spectroscopy in understanding established catalytic processes, but also consider its role in the design of future catalytic systems.

Graphical abstract: Neutron spectroscopy as a tool in catalytic science

Article information

Article type
Feature Article
31 Jul 2017
16 Oct 2017
First published
30 Oct 2017
This article is Open Access
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Commun., 2017,53, 12164-12176

Neutron spectroscopy as a tool in catalytic science

A. J. O'Malley, S. F. Parker and C. R. A. Catlow, Chem. Commun., 2017, 53, 12164 DOI: 10.1039/C7CC05982E

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