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Journal Article

Activation of diatomic molecules at solid surfaces


Ertl,  Gerhard
Physical Chemistry, Fritz Haber Institute, Max Planck Society;

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Ertl, G. (2005). Activation of diatomic molecules at solid surfaces. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A, 363(1829), 955-958. doi:10.1098/rsta.2004.1530.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0011-08F5-C
The interaction of a diatomic molecule with a well-defined single crystal surface represents the prototype of elementary processes involved in heterogeneous catalysis and can be studied down to atomic length and extremely short (femtosecond) time-scales. Our present understanding is illustrated by examples concerning the activation of hydrogen (including also the breakdown of thermal equilibrium during rapid laser-induced associative desorption), the role of steps as ‘active sites’ in the dissociative adsorption of NO or N2, and the mechanism and kinetics of the catalytic oxidation of CO.