Virtual Catalytic Reactor Laboratory


  • John L Falconer University of Colorado Boulder
  • Neil Hendren University of Colorado Boulder



A virtual catalytic reactor laboratory (VCRL) experiment, which can be used in most browsers, is described. Students select feed conditions and use the VCRL to take data for a gas-phase catalytic reaction and fit kinetic parameters to a Langmuir-Hinshelwood rate expression.  The VCRL contains instructions, equipment descriptions, an animated start-up procedure, a video tour of a physical laboratory, screencasts about nonlinear regression, a means to submit answers online, and an instructor portal.

Author Biographies

John L Falconer, University of Colorado Boulder

John L. Falconer is the Mel and Virginia Clark Emeritus Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering and a President’s Teaching Scholar at the University of Colorado Boulder. He has taught courses in thermodynamics, kinetics/reaction engineering, and catalysis. He has directed the LearnChemE effort at the University of Colorado Boulder to prepare screencasts, ConcepTests, interactive simulations, interactive self-study modules, and course packages for ChE courses.

Neil Hendren, University of Colorado Boulder

Neil Hendren is a professional research assistant in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder. He develops interactive simulations for He received his B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Colorado Boulder





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