Many chemical reactions don't
happen unless they are in the presence of a third substance called
Although the catalyst does not enter the reaction and does not
change itself, it has a key effect in the start and continuation of
the actual chemical process.
Catalysis plays a key part in all
our lives and is of vital importance to our present-day standard
of living and quality of life because of the many products and
energy related activities derived from its application.
Catalysts represent a major material industry. The 1989 U.S.
catalyst market was $1.9 billion [$5 billion, worldwide]. In 1999,
the catalyst market is approaching $3 billion in sales.