Widespread adoption of renewable (but intermittent) electrical energy sources requires a new generation of battery and electrolysis devices that can store energy chemically. Advances in electrochemical energy storage is currently hampered by insufficient knowledge of kinetic and transport properties at the nanoscale during cell operation, which generally differs from the properties of bulk materials. In pursuit of this information, workers have used scanning probe methods (SPM) to conduct electrochemical measurements on the nanoscale; however, traditional methods focus on measurements of local perturbations and responses, which can be challenging to extrapolate to device performance. My approach will instead use SPM as an in operando witness of local events during global electrochemical measurements such as linear or nonlinear impedance. In the short term, I will apply this to solid state battery materials. This work is highly collaborative, involving Dr. Jianyu Li (SPM), Dr. Jihui Yang (materials) and Dr. Stuart Adler (electrochemical measurements).
Advisor Stuart Adler – Chemical Engineering