chapter  9
22 Pages


The term “catalyst” was fi rst used by the Swedish chemist Jöns Jacob Berzelius in his published work on the catalytic decomposition of hydrogen peroxide in the Edinburg Philosophical Journal in 1836. He observed that a catalytic substance increased the rate of reaction without being changed or being consumed itself. However, the exact function of the catalyst remained a mystery to Berzelius for he described it as “an inherent force whose nature is still unknown.”