Zeolites have three main properties which are the basis for its many applications:
Pore structure and chemical composition: due to its homogeneous pores with well defined sizes, zeolites can be very effectively used as so called molecular sieves (e.g. by removing CO2 from air or purification of O2). The unique pore size also makes it extremely suitable for all kind of chemical reactions.
Ion exchange: the ions in the pores of zeolites can be exchanged with other ions. This property is amongst others used in applications as water softening (in detergents or in filters of coffee machines) or water treatment (for instance binding of ammonium in fishponds or heavy metals in water purification).
Adsorption: fully dried zeolites (activated zeolites) have the ability to quickly adsorb e.g. water. They are therefore used in a range of drying applications, both static (e.g. in double glazing) or dynamic (as in industrial gas drying processes).