Composite catalyst surfaces: Effect of inert and active heterogeneities on pattern formation

M. Bär, A. K. Bangia, I. G. Kevrekidis, G. Haas, H. H. Rotermund, G. Ertl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Spatiotemporal dynamics in reaction-diffusion systems can be altered through the properties (reactivity, diffusivity) of the medium in which they occur. We construct active heterogeneous media (composite catalytic surfaces with inert as well as active inclusions) using microelectronics fabrication techniques and study the spatiotemporal dynamics of heterogeneous catalytic reactions on these catalysts. In parallel, we perform simulations as well as numerical stability and bifurcation analysis of these patterns using mechanistic models. At the limit of large heterogeneity "grain size" (compared to the wavelength of spontaneously arising structures) the interaction of patterns with inert or active boundaries dominates (e.g., pinning, transmission, and boundary breakup of spirals, interaction of pulses with corners, "pacemaker" effects). At the opposite limit of very small or very finely distributed heterogeneity, effective behavior is observed (slight modulation of pulses, nearly uniform oscillations, effective spirals). Some representative studies of transitions between the two limits are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19106-19117
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of physical chemistry
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 5 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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