catalysiskəˈtæl ə sɪs; -ˌsiz
catalysis, contact action (noun)
acceleration of a chemical reaction induced the presence of material that is chemically unchanged at the end of the reaction
"of the top 50 commodity chemicals, 30 are created directly by catalysis and another 6 are made from raw materials that are catalytically produced"
The increase of the rate of a chemical reaction induced by a catalyst.
Catalysis is the increase in rate of a chemical reaction due to the participation of a substance called a catalyst. Unlike other reagents in the chemical reaction, a catalyst is not consumed. A catalyst may participate in multiple chemical transformations. The effect of a catalyst may vary due to the presence of other substances known as inhibitors or poisons or promoters. Catalyzed reactions have a lower activation energy than the corresponding uncatalyzed reaction, resulting in a higher reaction rate at the same temperature. However, the mechanistic explanation of catalysis is complex. Catalysts may affect the reaction environment favorably, or bind to the reagents to polarize bonds, e.g. acid catalysts for reactions of carbonyl compounds, or form specific intermediates that are not produced naturally, such as osmate esters in osmium tetroxide-catalyzed dihydroxylation of alkenes, or cause dissociation of reagents to reactive forms, such as chemisorbed hydrogen in catalytic hydrogenation. Kinetically, catalytic reactions are typical chemical reactions; i.e. the reaction rate depends on the frequency of contact of the reactants in the rate-determining step. Usually, the catalyst participates in this slowest step, and rates are limited by amount of catalyst and its "activity". In heterogeneous catalysis, the diffusion of reagents to the surface and diffusion of products from the surface can be rate determining. A nanomaterial-based catalyst is an example of a heterogeneous catalyst. Analogous events associated with substrate binding and product dissociation apply to homogeneous catalysts.