Partial differential equations, describing the consumption of reactants and the formation of products, have been solved numerically for a step change from inert to reactant feed considering different variants of propene oxidation mechanisms. The response features and their dependency on the rate limiting step have been rationalised in terms of conclusions, which can serve as general guidelines for mechanistic interpretation of experimental transients from hydrocarbon oxidation over metal oxides. Though the response pattern is characteristic of the rate limiting step, it is demonstrated that different variants of mechanisms can give identical response features. In that case complementary investigation with other techniques, or more detailed mathematical analysis is necessary.
- transient response