How Did We Do? Open Access Week 2015

ECS Digital LibraryIn honor of Open Access Week 2015 (October 19-25), ECS removed the paywall from the Digital Library in order to show readers our vision of the future.

Now, we need your help. Please take a few minutes to complete our brief (4 question) survey to share your feedback on ECS’s participation in Open Access Week, as well as ECS’s transition to Open Access.

Take the survey.

Bor-Yann-LiawBor Yann Liaw is a respected battery-related researcher, working in advanced power sources and energy storage systems at the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute. He has recently been appointed to the ECS Electrochemical Science & Technology (EST) Editorial Board as an Associate Editor for a two year-term, concentrating in Batteries & Energy Storage.

What do you hope to accomplish in your new role as the EST Editorial Board Assistant Editor?
I think that the impact of the journal is very high, but we need to have more people get involved. I am hoping to promote high-quality papers to be submitted to the journal and be part of the effort to promote the awareness of the journal.

What type of expertise do you bring?
I’ve been working in this area for about three decades, so I think that I have enough knowledge between the newer developments of materials, especially in the nano area, versus the most traditional and classic framework of electrochemistry. We’ll see whether we can bridge the technology gap between the two sets of skills into a more coherent framework, so we understand how the materials in a nanoscale can relate to the classical models or understandings for the electrochemistry.

What are the practical applications regarding your research in sugar-air batteries?
Recently we were working with farmers in Hawaii. We have a lot of papaya that are not marketable, which means they look ugly and are not really sellable. We can take those papaya and grind them up and take the juice and put it into a battery and it’s worked like a charm.

What initially got you interested in science?
My parents are both teachers, so I was inspired in the teaching and the education of possibilities of science. Another thing is probably more with my personality. I’m interested in exploring everything that occurs in our daily lives.

What is the biggest challenge going forward for clean energy?
We probably have to come back to more fundamental understandings and make things much easier and simpler so the cost can come down and the impact to the environment can be drastically reduced.

228th ECS Meeting Student Poster Session

Meeting attendees discussing the research presented at the Student Poster Session.

Meeting attendees discussing the research presented at the Student Poster Session.

ECS established General Student Poster Session Awards in 1993 to acknowledge the excellence and diligence of our students’ work. The winners demonstrate a deep understanding of their research topic and how it relates to one or more of the fields of interest to The Electrochemical Society. At each biannual ECS meeting, awards are given to students in two categories, electrochemical science and solid state science and technology. First and second place winners receive a certificate in addition to a cash award.

The 228th ECS Meeting Student Poster Session award winners holding their certificates.

The 228th ECS Meeting Student Poster Session award winners holding their certificates.


For the 228th ECS Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, the first place winners are Daiki Ito, and Xiaoxing Xia. Daiki Ito of Nagoya University, was the Solid State winner, and Xiaoxing Xia, of California Institute of Technology, was the Electrochemical Science winner. The second place winners were Kenta Machida of Kogakuin University and Subrahmanyam Goriparti of Instituto Italiano Di Technologia. Congratulations to all four winners!

In order to be eligible for the General Student Poster Session Awards, students must submit their abstracts to the Z01 General Society Student Poster Session symposium, and present their posters at the biannual meeting.

First place winner, Xiaoxing Xia accepting his certificate.

First place winner, Xiaoxing Xia accepting his certificate.

The submission deadline for the upcoming 229th ECS Meeting in San Diego is December 11, 2015.

Submit your abstract for the San Diego meeting today.

Disingenuous Scientometrics

The following is an article from the latest issue of Interface by co-editor Vijay Ramani.

The precise definition of the “impact” of a research product (e.g. publication) varies significantly among disciplines, and even among individuals within a given discipline. While some may recognize scholarly impact as paramount, others may emphasize the economic impact, the broad societal impact, or some combination therein. Given that the timeframe across which said impact is assessed can also vary substantially, it is safe to say that no formula exists that will yield a standardized and reproducible measure. The difficulties inherent in truly assessing research impact appear to be matched only by the convenience of the numerous flawed metrics that are currently in vogue among those doing the assessing.

Needless to say, many of these metrics are used outside the context for which they were originally developed. In using these measures, we are essentially sacrificing rigor and accuracy in favor of convenience (alas, a tradeoff that far too many in the community are willing to make!).


Breakthrough in Polishing of Silicon Carbide

Microscopic interferometric images and slope images of SiC surface (a) before (PV: 23.040 nm, Ra: 1.473 nm, RMS: 1.885 nm) and (b) after (PV: 2.070 nm, Ra: 0.198 nm, RMS: 0.247 nm) polishing with soda-lime glass plate.

Microscopic interferometric images and slope images of SiC surface (a) before (PV: 23.040 nm, Ra: 1.473 nm, RMS: 1.885 nm) and (b) after (PV:
2.070 nm, Ra: 0.198 nm, RMS: 0.247 nm) polishing with soda-lime glass plate.

Guest post by Jennifer Bardwell, Technical Editor of the ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS).

This paper, from Kumamoto University in Japan, concerns a technique for abrasive-free polishing of silicon carbide (SiC). This topic is timely as SiC is an important material for wide bandgap electronics, both in its own right, and as a substrate for gallium nitride electronics. The reviewers note that:

“Defect free polishing of SiC surface has high significance” and that “The results are amazing”

In the words of the abstract: “The experimental results showed that an oxide layer was formed on the SiC surface as a result of the chemical reaction between the interfaces of the synthetic SiO2 glass plate and the SiC substrate. This generated oxide layer was effectively removed by polishing with the soda-lime SiO2 glass plate, resulting in an atomically smooth SiC surface with a root mean square roughness of less than 0.1 nm for 1.5 h. Obtained experimental results indicate that the component materials, temperature and water adsorptive property of the soda-lime SiO2 glass play an important role in the removal of the tribochemically generated layer on the SiC surface during this polishing.”

Read the paper.

Technology Prospects for Future Mobility

review-paperWith the transportation sectors of industrialized countries on the rise and greenhouse gas emissions at an all-time high, many scientists and engineers are searching for the next-generation of transportation. From hybrid to electric to hydrogen, alternative energy sources for vehicles are being explored and tested throughout the scientific community. Now, many are wondering which technology will win in the race between battery- and hydrogen-powered cars.

A recent open access paper published in the Journal of The Electrochemical Society (JES) explores this topic. Authors Hubert A. Gasteiger, Jens-Peter Suchsland, and Oliver Gröger have outlined the technological barriers for next-generation vehicles in “Review—Electromobility: Batteries or Fuel Cells?” This paper comes as part of the recent JES Collection of Invited Battery Review Papers.

The majority of today’s vehicles depend on petroleum-based products in internal combustion engines to operate. The burning of these fuels results in the emission of greenhouse gasses. The majority of these transportation sector greenhouse gas emissions do not come from large modes of transportation such as aircrafts or ships—but are primarily produced by cars, trucks, and SUVs.

In the recently published review, the authors describe the possibilities of extended range electric vehicles, the challenges in hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, and the potential for new materials to be used in these applications.

Read this open access paper and read the rest of the JES Collection of Invited Battery Review Papers.

SanDiego_2016_homeWith our 228th meeting in Phoenix just completed, ECS is calling for abstract submissions for our 229th meeting in San Diego, California. By submitting an abstract, you have the opportunity to present a paper or participate in a poster session and are eligible to apply for a division-sponsored travel grant. Travel grants are intended is to assist students, postdoctoral researchers, and young professionals with the travel costs of attending an ECS biannual meeting. These grants are specific to each division.

How to submit an abstract:

To submit your abstract for the 229th meeting in San Diego, please visit here.

The deadline for submitting an abstract is DECEMBER 11, 2015.

How to apply for a travel grant:

Apply for a travel grant after submitting your abstract by visiting

The deadline for travel grant submissions for the San Diego meeting is FEBRUARY 12, 2016. 

If you have any additional questions please contact


Poster session winners Andrew Akbashev, Axel Gambou-Bosca, Andrew Durney

How to enter the General Poster Session:

Students are eligible for the biannual meeting general student poster awards by submitting their abstract to the Z01- General Society Student Poster Session. To submit your abstract for the San Diego meeting, please visit and then scroll to the “Z-General Topics” section.


Image Credit: Danny Kingsley & Sarah Brown

Image Credit: Danny Kingsley & Sarah Brown

For well over a year now, ECS has been actively pursuing its mission to Free the Science™ with our Author Choice Open Access program. We have seen amazing uptake, and we would like to take a moment to thank these authors for their valuable contributions to both our journals and our mission.

We would also like to take a moment to encourage those who have yet to publish OA to do so—after all, it is Open Access Week!

Publishing OA helps authors, researchers, and the society at large (not that there isn’t some overlap between those categories) – here’s how: (more…)

Battery2-bit-TIFF-194Read the 21 papers in the collection.

From Doron Aurbach, Technical Editor, Batteries and Energy Storage:

The field of advanced batteries is highly dynamic and important. The development and commercialization of Li ion batteries can be considered one of the most important successes of modern electrochemistry.

This battery technology is now challenged to power electric vehicles. The requirements of high-energy-density drive intensive work on novel battery systems, beyond Li ion technology (Li-sulfur, metal-oxygen batteries and more).

We are proud and happy to publish a special collection of papers on advanced batteries and related research efforts.

Twenty-one experts in the field were asked to submit review/opinion papers on topics related to advanced battery research, based on their experience. We believe that this collection of papers provides our readership an important update and guidelines for further studies and development work.

Read the 21 papers in the collection.

First Communication Article Published

JESECS just published its first Communication article in JES entitled “CommunicationIn Situ Formation of Anticorrosive Mg (OH)₂/Carbon Composite Film on Magnesium Alloy by Absorbic Acid-Assisted Hydrothermal Process.”

The authors are Takahiro Ishizaki, Naosumi Kamiyama, Erina Yamamoto, Sou Kumagai, Tomohito Sudare (all from Shibaura Institute in Tokyo, Japan), and Nagahiro Saito (Nagoya University).

Communications is a special category of short article for publication in the Journal of The Electrochemical Society (JES) or ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS). Communication articles are brief articles or reports that describe impactful research wherein dissemination prior to a full complete study/paper will substantially benefit the electrochemical or solid state community.

This article will be free in the ECS Digital Library for a limited time.