The Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry is a research center belonging to the Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), an agency under the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO), and is framed within the Area of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, one of eight scientific-technical areas in which the CSIC divides its research activities.
The ICP was established in 1975, as a consequence of the research activity formerly developed at the laboratory of Catalysis founded in 1952 by Prof. Juan Francisco García de la Banda, which in 1956 became the Catalysis Section and in 1972 the Department of Catalysis of the Institute of Physical Chemistry “Rocasolano” belonging to CSIC.
Due to its evolution, the ICP moved from its former headquarters at the center of Madrid out of the city, to a new building open in 1992 located at the campus of Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, forming part together with this university of the Excellence campus.
At present the ICP staff constitutes 190 people. In addition, a good number of undergraduates, PhD students, young and senior researchers, many of them from countries all over the world, join the institute every year for short research periods.
Research, both basic and applied, is carried out at the ICP within quite varied fields and kinds of catalysis, especially of heterogeneous and enzymatic types; it is worth remarking the synergy that exists between these two latter specialties as one of the singular features of ICP. As indicated in its current Action Plan, the R&D of the ICP is centred in three wide thematic lines addressing fundamental needs of society and industry, which are complemented by a set of diverse horizontal actions; all of them are developed in specific sub-lines where the different projects and contracts are implemented.