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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Eric M Stuve
CHEM E 560
Seattle Campus

Reactions at Solid Surfaces

Fundamental studies of adsorption and reactions on metallic and non-metallic surfaces with emphasis on heterogeneous catalysis and electrochemistry, including fuel cells. Topics include gas phase and liquid phase surface reactions, analyzed both experimentally and computationally. Prerequisite: undergraduate level course in kinetics or catalysis.

Class description

This course covers reactions at solid surfaces, primarily with respect to heterogeneous catalysis. The course focuses on concept of adsorption, desorption, and surface reactions rather than on experimental techniques. Lectures and homework problems will cover experimental and theoretical cases of surface reactions. A class project involves group work to analyze one particular type of surface reaction.

Student learning goals

Obtain turnover frequency and activation energies from surface reaction data

Develop a reaction mechanism and identify rate determining step(s)

Distinguish between kinetic and thermodynamic limitations in surface reactions

Interpret data in terms of theoretical or phenomenological models

General method of instruction

Instruction is by lectures, homework, two midterm exams, and a class project.

Recommended preparation

This graduate level course is open to students of chemical engineering, chemistry, physics, materials science, bioengineering and other students with an undergraduate background in reactions and reaction kinetics. The course is recommended for students pursuing research in surface science, heterogeneous reactions, electronic materials, and biomaterials at surfaces. The course is intended as a general graduate level course; previous work in surface science and catalysis is not required.

Class assignments and grading

There will be weekly homework assignments with students encouraged to work in groups. Two midterm exams will cover the material on the material and are open book and open note. A class project will help students specialize in some aspect of surface reactions.

Grades are based on curved scores.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Eric M Stuve
Date: 11/14/2013