Member Spotlight – Chanyuan Liu

Chanyuan Liu

Chanyuan Liu, ECS member and Ph.D. student at the University of Maryland, is the lead author on the nanopore study.
Credit: University of Maryland

The Electrochemical Society’s Chanyuan Liu, along with a team of University of Maryland researchers, believe they have developed a structure that could bring about the ultimate miniaturization of energy storage components.

The tiny structure, known as the nanopore, includes all the components of a battery and can be fully charged in 12 minutes and recharged thousands of times.

This from University of Maryland:

The structure is called a nanopore: a tiny hole in a ceramic sheet that holds electrolyte to carry the electrical charge between nanotube electrodes at either end. The existing device is a test, but the bitsy battery performs well.

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Van Gogh under the Microscope

By examining paint segments from Van Gough's "Sunflowers," experts believe preservation techniques could be improved.Credit: Van Gogh Gallery

By examining paint segments from Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers,” experts believe preservation techniques could be improved.
Credit: Van Gogh Gallery

Electrochemical and solid state science transcend the limits of academic science to touch many of the things we come into contact with on a day-to-day basis, whether we know it or not. Most recently we’ve gotten a first-hand account of this at our Electrochemical Energy and Water Summit, where some of the brightest minds in electrochemical and solid state science came together to solve critical issues in global sanitation. Now, these sciences are even assisting in the preservation of culture.

Pin-sized painting samples from Vincent van Gogh’s “Sunflowers” painting have been extracted from the Van Gogh Museum and are now under the microscope at The University of Queensland’s Centre for Microscopy and Microanalysis (CMM).

UQ’s Professor John Drennan is leading the project, which aims to understand the aging characteristics of significant artworks in order to improve conservation techniques.

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Why We Need More Women in Science

There is no doubt that women have made their mark in science. From Marie Curie to Rosalind Franklin – women have made outstanding contributions to innovation, research, and technology. Still, there is a significant gender bias that exists in the field, which affects research outcomes and discovery.

The questions exists: Why are there still so few women in science? How will this affect what we learn from research?

According to an article in National Geographic, women make up half the national workforce and earn more college and graduate degrees than men. Still, the gender gap in science exists – specifically in fields such as engineering.

This from National Geographic:

According to U.S. Census Bureau statistics, women in fields commonly referred to as STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) made up 7 percent of that workforce in 1970, a figure that had jumped to 23 percent by 1990. But the rise essentially stopped there. Two decades later, in 2011, women made up 26 percent of the science workforce.

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Honoring Veterans

ECS Past Presidents

ECS past presidents who were involved with the Manhattan Project. Clockwise starting at the top left: Lyle I. Gilbertson, Walter J. Hamer, Norman Hackerman, Harold J. Read

Here in the home office we are not just honoring U.S. Veterans today. As a society with international membership, we are thinking about the men and women who have served their countries around the world.

We couldn’t help but look into how electrochemistry and solid state science might have shaped a soldier’s life.

It turns out, when you are working for an organization that has been around since 1902 and that cuts across so much of our everyday lives, you have enough material to write a book on any one subject.

Here are just a few nuggets:

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Smart Streets: The Highway Is Getting Brighter

The painted road markings are said to be able to glow up to eight hours in the dark.Credit: Roosegaarde

The painted road markings are said to be able to glow up to eight hours in the dark.
Credit: Roosegaarde

There has been a great deal of debate and innovation in smart cars recently, but why just stop at the car? Why not make a smart highway?

At least that’s the question Dutch developer Heijmans and designer Daan Roosegaard are asking. Since 2012 the duo have been talking about and drumming up game plans for innovative designs that would improve road sustainability, safety, and perception.

These ideas include: electric priority lane, which would allow electric cars to charge themselves while driving; dynamic paint, which would glow or become transparent upon sensing temperature in order to let you know road conditions; and interactive light, which would be controlled by sensors to active only when traffic approaches in order to create sustainable road light.

But the company’s main, and most tangible, development is their glow-in-the-dark lining.

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The ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS) is one of the newest peer-reviewed journals from ECS launched in 2012.

The ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS) is one of the newest peer-reviewed journals from ECS launched in 2012.

Atomic Layer Etch (ALEt) and Atomic Layer Clean (ALC) are emerging as enabling technologies for sub 10nm technology nodes. At these scales performance will be extremely sensitive to process variation.

Atomic layer processes are the most promising path to deliver the precision needed. However, many areas of ALEt and ALC are in need of improved fundamental understanding and process development. This focus issue will cover state-of-the-art efforts that address a variety of approaches to ALEt and ALC.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Surface reaction chemistry and its impact on selectivity
  • Plasma ion energy distribution and control methods
  • Novel plasma sources and potential application to ALEt & ALC
  • Innovative approaches to atomic layer material removal
  • Novel device applications of ALEt & ALC
  • Process chamber design considerations
  • Advanced delivery of chemicals to processing chambers
  • Metrology and control of ALEt & ALC
  • Device performance impact
  • Synthesis of new chemistries for ALEt & ALC application
  • Damage free surface defect removal
  • Process and discharge modeling

Find out more!

Deadline for submission of manuscripts is December 17, 2014.

Please submit manuscripts here.

Member Spotlight – Shelley Minteer

ECS's Shelley Minteer has developed a fuel cell that can convert jet fuel to electricity at room temperature without igniting the fuel.Credit: Dan Hixson/University of Utah College of Engineering

ECS’s Shelley Minteer has developed a fuel cell that can convert jet fuel to electricity at room temperature without igniting the fuel.
Credit: Dan Hixson/University of Utah College of Engineering

The Electrochemical Society’s Shelley Minteer and her team of engineers at The University of Utah have developed the first room-temperature fuel cell that uses enzymes to help jet fuel produce electricity without need to ignite the fuel.

The new fuel cells will be able to be used to power portable electronics, off-grid power, and sensors.

The study was published in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Catalysis with Minteer as the senior author.

“The major advance in this research is the ability to use Jet Propellant-8 directly in a fuel cell without having to remove sulfur impurities or operate at very high temperature,” says Minteer. “This work shows that JP-8 and probably others can be used as fuels for low-temperature fuel cells with the right catalysts.”

The standard technique for converting jet fuel to electricity is both difficult, due to the sulfur content, and inefficient, with only 30 percent of the fuel converted to electricity under the best conditions.

This from The University of Utah:

To overcome these constraints, the Utah researchers used JP-8 in an enzymatic fuel cell, which uses JP-8 for fuel and enzymes as catalysts. Enzymes are proteins that can act as catalysts by speeding up chemical reactions. These fuel cells can operate at room temperature and can tolerate sulfur.

Read the full article here.

Minteer is a valued member of ECS and is on the editorial board of the Journal of The Electrochemical Society and ECS Electrochemistry Letters – along with being a past chair of the Physical and Analytical Electrochemistry Division. You can also read her published research in our Digital Library.

Make sure to sign up for our e-Alerts so you don’t miss the newest, cutting-edge research!

New Coating to Make Batteries Safer

At left, a typical button battery; at right, a button battery coated with quantum tunneling composite (QTC).Credit: Bryan Laulicht/MIT

At left, a typical button battery; at right, a button battery coated with quantum tunneling composite (QTC).
Credit: Bryan Laulicht/MIT

We’ve heard a lot about innovation and improvements in the field of battery recently, but safety seems to have been put on the back-burner in lieu of creating a more powerful battery. This issue has now been addressed through funding from the National Institutes of Health in order to make technological breakthroughs in safety innovations for batteries.

According to the National Capital Poison Center, more than 3,500 people of all ages swallow button batteries every year in the United States. In order to combat the permanent injury that this could cause, researchers from MIT, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Massachusetts General Hospital have come together to create a coating that prevents batteries from conducing electricity after being swallowed – thereby causing no damage to the gastrointestinal tract.

Prior to this innovation, once a battery was swallowed, it would start to interact with the saliva and create an electric current. This current produces hydroxide, which causes damages to tissue. If not treated, this can cause serious injury within a few hours.

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ECS President Paul Kohl presented one of the Society's esteemed awards at the 2014 ECS and SMEQ Joint International Meeting.

ECS President Paul Kohl presented one of the Society’s esteemed awards at the 2014 ECS and SMEQ Joint International Meeting.

The Canada Section of The Electrochemical Society is currently seeking nominations for one of its prestigious awards.

W. Lash Miller Award

The Award has been created to honor the memory of W. Lash Miller, an eminent Canadian chemist. He was the Head of the Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto and President of The Electrochemical Society in 1912. Lash Miller was one of the first proponents of Gibbsian thermodynamics in North America.

The W. Lash Miller Award of the ECS Canada Section was established in 1967 to recognize outstanding technical contribution to the field of electrochemical science and technology and/or solid state science and technology. The candidate must have demonstrated independent research in academia, industry or governmental laboratories.

To be considered for the award, a nominee must be residing in Canada and have obtained his/her last advanced education degree no more than 15 years before the year of the Award (for this cycle, 2015). The recipient does not need to be a member of ECS. The complete award rules may be found here.

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The ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS) is one of the newest peer-reviewed journals from ECS launched in 2012.

The ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS) is one of the newest peer-reviewed journals from ECS launched in 2012.

Printing technologies in an atmospheric environment offer the potential for low-cost and materials-efficient alternatives for manufacturing electronics and energy devices such as luminescent displays, thin film transistors, sensors, thin film photovoltaics, fuel cells, capacitors, and batteries.

This focus issue will cover state-of-the-art efforts that address a variety of approaches to printable functional materials and devices.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Printable functional materials: metals; organic conductors; organic and inorganic semiconductors; and more
  • Functional printed devices: RFID tags and antenna; thin film transistors; solar cells; and more
  • Advances in printing and conversion processes: ink chemistry; ink rheology; printing and drying process; and more
  • Advances in conventional and emerging printing techniques: inkjet printing; aerosol printing; flexographic printing; and more

Find out more!

Deadline for submission of manuscripts is November 30, 2014.

Please submit manuscripts here.