When you talk about chemical processes, most people are unaware of exactly how they tend to take place. One of the most important feature to keep in mind about chemical reactions is Catalysts. You must have heard of them throughout your life but what exactly are they? Well, in the simplest words, they are the agents responsible for doing nothing other than speeding up the reaction processes. Catalysts don’t really take part in the reactions, which means that they, themselves are not affected by the reactions taking place but they are a major part of them.
If you’re not much aware of catalysts then you may not be aware of Catalysis either. This post will give you all the information you need about the process of Catalysis.
What is Catalysis?
Catalysis is basically the reaction described above. They speed up the chemical reaction that is taking place by sufficiently lowering the energy needed to allow the reaction to continue. In other words, it’s a process that carries out the original reaction at a faster pace while allowing you to save energy. It’s no wonder that it’s termed as the basic processes in all industrial chemical reactions. Amongst other things, industries mostly use it to make plastics and several manufactured items as well.
Note: Industries are not the only places dedicated to using the process of Catalysis, the human body is known to carry it out as well.
Understanding the process
In an attempt to understand catalysis, you have to know how exactly the mechanism works. Every reaction has an activation energy which is the minimum energy required to break the bonds of the substance. Adding a catalyst provides a new pathway for reaction to proceed and this pathway is, more often than not, the shorter route. This would mean that the rate of reaction is increased, energy decreased and the process occurring much more efficiently than normal.
The process of catalysis does, in no way, affect the end-product and neither is it, itself, affected by the reaction. You can expect pure products at your disposal by the end of every reaction.
Types of catalysts
Most people believe that catalysts are man-made features used in industries, however, that is not always true. There are two major types of catalysts available:
Natural Catalysts; aka Enzymes
Enzymes are the most common catalysts and they are mostly found in nature. These are the catalysts found inside the human body and through them, the body is able to achieve low rated process to occur at a much faster rate. Enzymes are normally considered as the most efficient catalysts and often work with a “lock and key” mechanism for faster results.
These catalysts are usually found in laboratories and are known to be acidic or basic. Some reactions tend to occur faster in the presence of acids and bases and that’s where these catalysts come in. While these tend to participate during the reaction, the end product will not contain traces of these catalysts. Other types contain fine metal grains which use the process of adsorption to carry out the process.
Most industries such as Watson International, excelling at chemical production make use of catalysts in their everyday processes. This company excels at synthesizing the first class products for clients of any field.