September 1991, ©1992
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Most chemical reactions in industry and biology are catalytic and play a role at some stage of the processing of about 80% of the goods manufactured in the U.S., yet catalysis is a neglected subject in chemical education. The fragmentary treatment accorded the topic until now is integrated. It covers, in a unified way, catalysis in solutions, by enzymes, in synthetic polymers within the molecular scale cages of zeolites and other molecular sieves, and on surfaces of inorganic solids. The central ideas are chemical; principles are illustrated by emphasizing industrial reactions and catalysts.