Localized catalyst activity in an SCR unit for controlling emissions from a boiler, power plant, or any facility that generates NO.sub.x-containing flue gases is monitored by one or more modules that operate on-line without disrupting the normal operation of the facility. Each module is positioned over a designated lateral area of one of the catalyst beds in the SCR unit, and supplies ammonia, urea, or other suitable reductant to the catalyst in the designated area at a rate that produces an excess of the reductant over NO.sub.x on a molar basis through the designated area. Sampling probes upstream and downstream of the designated area draw samples of the gas stream for NO.sub.x analysis, and the catalyst activity is determined from the difference in NO.sub.x levels between the two probes.
STATEMENT AS TO RIGHTS TO INVENTIONS MADE UNDER FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
This invention was made with Government support under contract no. DE-FC26-05NT42298 awarded by the Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in this invention.