We Choose to Go to the Moon

The following article was originally published in the winter 2017 issue of Interface.

By: Roque J. Calvo, ECS Executive Director

Free the ScienceUnited States President John F. Kennedy sent a powerful message to the country in his speech at Rice University in1962, “We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win.”

History has shown that it was not necessary to go to the Moon to win Kennedy’s challenge. His primary goal was to elevate U.S. national security during the Cold War when the Soviet Union was advancing as a world power and showing signs of superiority in their space program. The U.S. put a man on the Moon in 1969, but far more important was the spirit of innovation that was created, leading to world-changing new technologies in security, communications, and transportation, which was the true win.

Kennedy understood the importance of innovation and risk taking to the success of a nation and his speech permanently implanted this message into the ideal of science and the role it plays in advancing mankind. He continues to stimulate progress because in his words, “there is new knowledge to be gained … and used for the progress of all people.” It is amazing how Kennedy’s influence has prevailed. In a recent ECS podcast with Steven Chu,* the former U.S. Secretary of Energy and 1997 Nobel Prize winner said, “As a scientist, you better be an optimist … half the science I try to do is really shoot for the Moon.”


Below is an excerpt from an article published in the winter 2017 edition of Interface.

By: Durga Misra, New Jersey Institute of Technology

Winter 2017 InterfaceThe explosive progress of information technology and 5th generation communication technology enables the introduction of the Internet of Things, where the network of physical objects—devices, vehicles, and buildings embedded with sensors, electronics, software, and network connectivity—permits these physical objects to collect and exchange data. The use of dielectric materials in sensors for a multitude of applications such as self-driving cars has made the dielectric science and technology research even more significant than before.

More than seventy years ago, in 1945, it all started with establishing the Electric Insulation Division in ECS to offer an interdisciplinary forum to discuss the science of the materials used for electrical insulation in power transmission. With the advancement of technology, when integrated circuits became popular, the division became the Dielectrics and Insulation Division in 1965. In 1990, it became the Dielectric Science and Technology Division due to extensive growth in electronic manufacturing technology. Today, the division still provides a strong interdisciplinary research environment.

In this issue of Interface we have focused on some of the current topics that are an integral part of current and future technologies.


By: Brian Nosek, Center for Open Science

JournalsIn the Fall of 2011, Sarah Mackenzie, the maid of honor at my wedding, was diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer. Sarah and her family were motivated to learn as much as they could about the disease to advocate for her care. They weren’t scientists, but they started searching the literature for relevant articles. One evening, Sarah called us, angry. Every time she found an article that might be relevant to understanding her disease, she ran into a paywall requiring $15-$40 to access it. Public money had paid for the research, yet she was barred from making any use of it. Luckily, she had us. Most people in Sarah’s position don’t have the luxury of friends at wealthy academic institutions with subscriptions to the literature.

During this time, I was pursuing an interest in the business models of scholarly communication. I wanted to understand the ways in which these models interfered with the dissemination of knowledge that could improve quality of life. Sarah’s experience illustrated one key part of the problem–the outcomes of research should be public goods, but the business models of publishing make them exclusive goods. Lack of access to published literature limits our ability to apply what we know to improving others’ quality of life. If doctors can’t access the literature, they can’t keep up with the latest innovations for care. If policy makers can’t access the literature, they can’t create evidence based policies. To advance solutions and cures, the outcomes of research must be open.


ORCID Requirement to Take Effect

ORCIDAs of January 1, 2018, ECS will require all corresponding authors to have an ORCID iD in order to submit to the Journal of The Electrochemical Society or the ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology.

This requirement comes as part of ECS’s enduring commitment to open science. In addition to streamlining documentation processes for authors and publishers, ORCID facilitates trusted connections that advance scientific discovery, collaboration, and innovation. Learn more about this requirement.

How can you prepare? All you have to do is register! Registration is free, takes 30 seconds, and provides you immediate benefits. ECS recommends that all authors register, regardless of whether or not they will serve as a corresponding author.

ORCID iDs will be published in accepted articles and included in articles’ metadata to improve content discoverability and citation. See where.

Contributing authors who would like their ORCID iDs displayed along with the corresponding author’s iD will need to update their profiles in ECSxPress with their ORCID iDs prior to their paper’s acceptance.


A new article from The Scholarly Kitchen provides a good summary (and a short read) of a recent action against a particular predatory publisher (OMICS) and why that’s important. As the last, independent nonprofit publisher in the top-ranked journals in our field, ECS lives up to its obligations to the community to maintain very high standards: dedication to mission, rigorous peer review, and transparency in our open access publishing practices.

Commercial publishers represent a major challenge for a scholarly society like ECS to uphold those standards and meet our mission; but the open access environment has created even more challenges. Authors have these same challenges. So it bears repeating that there are some “best practices” to which we should all do our best to adhere: carefully vet journals where we are submitting; create awareness with our various constituents (members, students, colleagues) that there are “good” and “not good” places to publish; and do a periodic Web scan of own own names from time to time to make sure we have not been added to an editorial or advisory board without our knowledge, which can compromise our personal identity and standing in the community.

ECS will continue to work toward its Free the Science goals to create a more open, but responsible, scholarly communications ecosystem.

In a recent interview, ReasonsTV sat down with PLOS co-founder Michael Eisen to discuss open access, the academic publishing monopoly, and ways to democratize scientific progress.

PS: ECS’s Free the Science initiative is a move toward a future that embraces open science to further advance research in our field. This is a long-term vision for transformative change in the traditional models of communicating scholarly research.

Other ECS programs that advance the shift to open science include the upcoming launch of ECSarXiv, a preprint server through a partnership with the Center for Open Science, enhanced research dissemination with Research4Life, ECS OpenCon, and expanding our publications to include more research in data sciences.

Focus IssuesSubmission Deadline: December 26, 2017

The Journal of The Electrochemical Society Focus Issue on Ubiquitous Sensors and Systems for IoT is currently accepting manuscripts.

Ubiquitous sensors are becoming an integral part of Internet of Things (IoT) applications, and progress in this domain can be seen each month. The promise is that everyone and everything will be connected via wireless data collection, and services like healthcare will be brought to everyone, everywhere, anytime, for virtually any need.

These devices sense the environment and provide applications in home automation, home safety and comfort, and personal health. At a macro level they provide data for smart cities, smart agriculture, water conservation, energy efficiency industry 4.0, and Society 5.0.

Other applications include supply chain management, transportation, and logistics.


Focus IssuesDeadline Extended: December 22, 2017

This focus issue of the Journal of The Electrochemical Society (JES) is devoted to proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) durability. Commercialization of light duty fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) was initiated in December 2014 and now three automakers offer FCVs. Commercial viability was enabled by R&D efforts that reduced the cost and extended the lifetime of FCV PEMFC systems by a projected >60% and 4x, respectively, over the past decade.

However, market share for FCVs has been limited thus far, primarily due to an insufficient hydrogen fueling infrastructure, but also to the still considerable cost of fuel cell systems able to reach the 8,000 h target lifetime. For example, it is recognized that a decrease in platinum loading negatively impacts durability. It is projected that a 5% world market share for FCVs will be reached in 2033. With substantial market share many years away and the considerable cost of current FCVs, research into the durability of materials for fuel cell systems that can concurrently lower the system cost will play a significant role in technology developments for many years to come. This focus issue of the JES will collect the most recent research papers and reviews of technical issues related to the durability of PEMFCs.

The deadline for submissions has been extended to December 22, 2017. Submit today!


ResearchOn November 14, 2017, Clarivate Analytics published its annual list of Highly Cited Researchers with the overarching declaration that “whether ‘Highly Cited’ or ‘Hot,’ these researchers are making a significant impact.”

Some of our most distinguished ECS members have been noted this year as the “world’s most influential scientific minds” often listed multiple times in the categories of physics, chemistry and materials science.

Below, find a short list of those members of The Electrochemical Society whose research on electrochemistry and solid state science and technology is shaping the scientific discourse. Read the full article.

Khalil Amine (F)
Phaedon Avouris
Yury Gogotsi (F)
Michael Graetzel
Joseph Hupp
Thomas Jaramillo

Prashant Kamat (F)
Jim Yang Lee
Nathan Lewis
Joachim Maier (F)
Arumugam Manthiram (F)
Linda Nazar
Kostya Novoselov

Stefano Passerini
Patrick Schmuki
Bruno Scrosati (F)
Yang Shao-Horn (F)
Jean-Marie Tarascon
Martin Winter (F)
Gleb Yushin


Focus IssuesSubmit your manuscripts to the ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology (JSS) Focus Issues on Semiconductor-Based Sensors for Application to Vapors, Chemicals, Biological Species, and Medical Diagnosis by February 14, 2018.

This JSS focus issue aims to cover various active or passive semiconductor devices for gas, chemical, bio and medical detection, with the focus on silicon, GaN, dichalcogenides/oxides, graphene, and other semiconductor materials for electronic or photonic devices. The scope of contributed articles includes materials preparation, growth, processing, devices, chemistry, physics, theory, and applications for the semiconductor sensors. Different methodologies, principles, designs, models, fabrication techniques, and characterization are all included. Integrated systems combine semiconductor sensors, electric circuit, microfluidic channels, display, and control unit for real applications such as disease diagnostic or environmental monitoring are also welcome.


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