General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title Catalytic Oxidation Processes
Language English
Module lecturer Prof. UAM Agnieszka Held/dr Jolanta Kowalska-Kuś
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position professor/adiunkt
Faculty Faculty of Chemistry
Semester 2024/2025 (summer)
Duration 45
USOS code 02-COPA


lecture 15h; laboratory 30h x 2 groups = 60h

Module aim (aims)

This module is concerned with understanding the importance of catalytic oxidation processes developed in industry and also how this can be used as a tool for green chemistry. Today’s chemical industries need to give more focus for the planet through improving the environmental footprints in chemicals manufacturing processes. Oxidation processes are widely used in the production of chemicals and fuels. However, some of the important production still occur with toxic wastes formation (e.g. chlorohydrin method of propylene oxide production) or with high energy demands (e.g. endothermic dehydrogenation of alkanes). Therefore, oxidation processes using eco-friendly oxidizing agents such as molecular oxygen, ozone, waste nitrous oxide, and hydrogen peroxide with low energy request are increasingly becoming important to improve the environmental sustainability. The module begins with short introduction to catalysis, followed by presentation of oxidation mechanisms, examples of catalysts and different oxidants. All the topics will be discussed based on the industrial large-scale oxidation processes and also will be round off with the latest research on new, ecological industrial achievements and also on still unresolved challenges in the area.

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)

The basic knowledge of inorganic and organic chemistry as well as instrumental analysis.


Week 1: Introduction to catalysis: definitions, classification of catalysts, steps of catalytic reaction
Week 2: Mechanisms of catalytic oxidation processes, applied oxidants
Week 3: Heterogeneous versus homogeneous catalysis in selective oxidation
Week 4: Catalysts used in oxidation processes (supported and unsupported metallic catalysts, transition metal oxides supported on different materials, the role of support)
Week 5 - 6: Important industrial processes based on catalytic oxidation (e.g. ammoxidation, selective oxidation of light hydrocarbons)
Week 7: New concepts and new strategies in the field of selective oxidation
Week 8: Final exam

Reading list

1. G. Centi, F. Cavani, F. Trifir?, “Selective Oxidation by Heterogeneous Catalysis”, Springer, 2001
2. G. Centi, F. Trifir?, “New Developments in Selective Oxidation”, Studies in Surface Science and Catalysis, Elsevier, 1990
3. C. H. Bartholomew, R. J. Farrauto „Fundamentals of Industrial Catalytic Processes”, John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2006.
4. A. Scarso, G. Strukul, “Sustainability Trends in Homogeneous Catalytic Oxidations. Handbook of Advanced Methods and Processes in Oxidation Catalysis”, 2014, 679–766.