CHEM 710/7100 - Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Catalysis

Semester: Fall 2023

Professor: M. Schlaf | Discipline: Inorganic | Campus: Guelph


Next to the mining and processing of metals (i.e., metallurgy), catalysis is arguably the most important technology underpinning our civilization.
The production of almost everything – e.g., fertilizers, fuels, lubricants, polymers, detergents, drugs – depends on catalytic processes.

This course will provide an introduction and overview of the field of catalysis discussing both heterogeneous supported metals and homogeneous transition metal complexes focusing on

  • general principles and reaction patterns of catalytically active metal centres in complexes and on surfaces
  • mechanisms: kinetic and thermodynamic parameters and how to determine them
  • activation of small molecules such as hydrogen, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, methane, ethylene, propylene, ethylene oxide, etc.
  • large scale industrially relevant processes and their socio-economic importance: the chemical supply chain and sustainability
  • chemo-, regio-, and enantio-selective processes to high-value added products

The ultimate objective of the course is to provide you with the know-how to understand the mechanisms of any catalyzed reactions and have some insight into the principles of catalyst, reaction and process design. The course will be – as much as possible – conceptual in nature and thus should be suitable for students in any field of chemistry (inorganic, organic, physical and analytical) with 3rd year level undergraduate courses in inorganic and organic chemistry.








  • Mon: 7:00 pm - 9:20 pm in MacN 203

Office Hours