Credit: Image courtesy of Argonne National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy
Visual of two variations of the catalyst, with a segment of the shell removed to show the interior. The white sphere represents the silica shell, the holes are the pores. The bright green spheres represent the catalytic sites, the ones on the left are much smaller than the ones on the right. The longer red strings represent the polymer chains, and the shorter strings are products after catalysis. All shorter strings are similar in size, representing the consistent selectivity across catalyst variations. Additionally, there are more smaller chains produced by the smaller catalyst sites because the reaction occurs more quickly.