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Chemists preparing heterogeneous catalysts are interior design architects “at nanometric level”. The house is the porous solid material constituting the backbone of the catalyst. The furniture is the catalytically active site where the transformation of the reactants into products takes place. The use of the space corresponds to the study of the physico-chemical characteristics useful to tune and optimize the catalytic performance. The final users are the molecules diffusing in and out the nanometre-sized network of pores.

Catalyst preparation has been considered for a long time as one of the last strongholds of alchemy. Now the chemist can choose the best combination of parameters in order to design and develop the most suitable catalyst for a specific reaction.

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