This study aims to investigate surface catalytic reaction and flame combustion of lean premixed mixture in a catalytically stabilized combustor through experiment and modeling. Five types of catalyst beds composed of Various combinations of noble metal catalysts, Pd and Pt, and a high temperature catalyst, La-Mn-hexaaluminate, were tested. Results showed that the most active catalyst system consisted of a Pd catalyst in the first stage of the catalyst bed and a Pt catalyst in the second stage. A numerical simulation, consisting of three sets of multi-step elementary surface reactions for CH4 oxidation over Pt, was conducted and the most accurate model was used to evaluate the catalyst bed and the homogeneous reaction. The numerical simulation showed that the flame speed of the mixture supported by catalytic surface reaction was much raised as compared to the mixture without a catalytic combustion. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.