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Book Review A Wide Spectrum for Analysis Spectroscopy in Catalysis. An Introduction. By J. W. Niemantsverdriet

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A Wide Spectrum for Analysis
Spectroscopy in Catalysis. An Introduction. By J. K Niemantsverdriet.
VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim/
VCH Publishers, New York, 1993.
288 pp., hardcover DM 148.00,
Heterogeneous catalysis under real
conditions is an extremely complicated
process, not least
due to the complex nature of the
catalysts and the
structural changes
that they undergo
as a result of variations in the reacting environment
and other external
conditions. Ultimately one would
like to have experimental methods that
could reveal in situ on an atomic scale the
chemical processes occurring on catalyst
surfaces. As these do not exist, systematic
progress in understanding heterogeneous
catalysis can only be achieved by the combined use of as many analytical techniques as possible in conjunction with
model studies. The latter are important
for two reasons. Firstly, they enable one
to study systems under well-defined conditions with regard to surface structure,
surface composition, and external reaction conditions, so that the dependence on
individual variables can be investigated.
Secondly, they can be carried out under
conditions that are essential for many of
the analytical methods; for example, ultra-high vacuum conditions are necessary
for all types of electron spectroscopy.
This section contains book reviews and a list of
new books received by the editor Book reviews are
written by invitation from the editor. Suggestions
for books to be reviewed and for book reviewers
are welcome. Publishers should send brochures or
(better) books to Dr. Ralf Baumann, Redaktion
Angewandte Cheniie. Postfach 101 161, D-69451
Weinheim. Federal Republic of Germany. The editor reserves the right of selecting which books will
be reviewed. Uninvited books not chosen for
review will not be returned.
A n R m Chhein. lnf.Ed. Engl. 1995. 34, No. 4
Whereas on the one hand in-situ measurements under real conditions seldom
lead to unambiguous conclusions about
relationships, model studies on the other
hand suffer from the inherent danger of
oversimplification and the neglect of
“synergistic effects”. However, so far
there has been no way out of this dilemma
(the gap between surface science and
catalysis) other than to approach the
problem from the two sides simultaneously. With this in mind the book reviewed
here makes a particularly useful contribution in describing as wide a range of complementary methods as possible.
The book begins with an introductory
chapter outlining the basic features of heterogeneous catalysis, its enormous technological and economic importance, and
the scientific problems that it poses. This
is followed by seven chapters dealing with
the most important methods used to study
the physical properties of, and chemical
processes occurring at, catalyst surfaces,
as follows-Chapter 2: Temperature-programmed surface reaction and desorption
techniques; Chapter 3 : Photoelectron and
Auger electron spectroscopies ; Chapter 4: Ion scattering and ion spectroscopy
techniques, including mass spectrometry
of secondary ions and neutral particles;
Chapter 5 : Mossbauer spectroscopy;
Chapter 6: X-Ray and electron diffraction methods; Chapter 7 : Electron microscopy and scanning probe microscopy;
Chapter 8: Vibrational spectroscopies
with photon and electron excitation.
Whereas those methods that depend on
particles (electrons, ions, or atoms) for excitation or detection usually require vacuum conditions, the photon techniques can
be used in situ. The methods described
can provide answers to all the relevant
questions, such as those relating to the
atomic structure of surfaces, their qualitative and quantitative chemical composition and the distribution of the various
surface constituents, the electronic structure of surfaces and adsorbed reacting
species, and their vibrational properties as
an indication of the nature of the chemical
The author is a physicist and an active
researcher in an institute devoted to catalysis research. Through a good choice of
VCH Verlugsgrsellxhafi mbH, 0-65451 Weinheim, 1595
subject matter and the way in which it is
presented he makes a valuable contribution to bridging the gap between surface
physics and catalyst research. The theoretical fundamentals of the individual
methods are treated in a clear and easily
understandable way, with just the right
amount of detail for an initial assessment
of the capabilities and limitations of the
techniques for specific applications in
catalysis research. Especially useful in this
respect are the discussions that have been
worked into the text in many places, comparing and evaluating the (mutually complementary) information given by the various methods when applied to a particular
problem. Also of special value is Chapter 9, in which three case studies (supported rhodium catalysts, Co/Mo sulfide
desulfuration catalysts, and alkali promotors on metal surfaces) are taken as examples, stretching each of the previously
described methods to its full capabilities
to yield the maximum information about
the catalytic system.
The book can be recommended equally
for the catalysis scientist, to extend his or
her knowledge of the methods, to the surface physicist to stimulate interest in the
analytical problems of heterogeneous
catalysis, and for the student wishing to
specialize in catalysis.
Klaus Wundelt
Institut fur Physikalische Chemie
der Universitat Bonn (FRG)
Fundamentals of Photoinduced Electron Transfer. By G. J. Kavarnos.
VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim/VCH Publishers, New York,
1993.359 pp., hardcover DM 105.00,
$75.00.-ISBN 3-527-27856-1,’
This volume is intended to serve as an
introduction and course book to accompany a lecture series on photochemistry
for students of all branches of the natural
sciences. Accordingly, special attention
has been given to presenting the subject in
a suitable form for teaching purposes. The
text is divided into six chapters. The
first two, “Introductory Concepts” and
0570-0833/5510404-0495 $ 10.00
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