Catalyst Function


Catalyst Function

A catalyst is a substance that affects, promotes or accelerates reaction of two or more substances to generate a different end product. Catalysts are often used in industrial processes, including food manufacture, to optimise manufacturing rates and volumes. Catalysis (the action of a catalyst) may also be used to change compounds to minimise their effect on processes, the environment and human wellbeing. Two key types of catalyst are in general use by industry today: catalyst support and true catalysts.

Catalysts themselves may be:

  • Homogenous – used in the solvent and intimately mixed with the reagents
  • Heterogenous – used in solid form as a contact ‘surface’ for the reagents


  • Can help to generate higher product volumes
  • Can help to increase production speeds
  • High purity catalyst support media for precious metal coating
  • Low attrition grades of activated carbon minimising active catalyst ingredient loss in service
  • A range of product activities to suit a wide range of heterogeneous catalyst duties
  • Low moisture product for untreated catalyst service e.g. phosgene and sulfuryl chloride production
  • Industry leading homogenous catalysts in fine granular and powdered forms
Catalyst Support

Catalyst Support

This usage of activated carbon describes where the carbon catalyst acts as an ‘inert’ substrate for impregnation of the active catalyst. This can be a precious metal catalyst in solid form (for reaction) or liquid catalyst (for process enhancement).

Jacobi Carbons are leading manufacturers of both types of catalyst support products for a variety of duties, including hydrogenation, fuel desulphurisation (also known as the mercaptan oxidation process) and plastics (PVC) manufacture. Careful control on key parameters, such as attrition, permit the efficient reclamation of the impregnation at the end of the catalyst service life.

True Catalyst

True Catalyst

A true catalyst is not changed in state, form or characteristic, or consumed in the reaction. Activated carbon does not have an inert surface and can also promote reactions in its standard or untreated form. The active sites may be due to constituents of the ash present or as a result of oxide or nitrate groups generated during high temperature activation.

Used widely in the manufacture of industrial chemicals like phosgene, sulfuryl chloride and glyphosate, an untreated activated carbon from Jacobi utilises the inherent surface reactivity to efficiently produce products with a high yield and minimal by-product formation.


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