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State-of-the-Art, Challenges, Examples, Future Prospects

The growing interest in, e.g. new energy conversion and storage systems drives the fast development of new analytical techniques that allow for in-situ and operando characterization of electrochemical interfaces to gain atomic-level understanding of underlying processes in devices including batteries, fuel cells, water electrolyzers, supercapacitors, etc. The workshop aims at bringing together scientists who are interested in fundamental processes occurring at the interfaces and in the bulk of electrode and electrolyte materials and provides interdisciplinary education to PhD students.

This event takes place in the following cycle:

Each month


• Language: English
• Duration: 60 min, followed by a 30 min Q&A session
• For now, this lecture series will only be held online. Please register here.

Lecture Series Winter semester 2021/22





Oct. 20th


Mikhail Avdeev

In situ/operando studies of electrochemical interfaces with neutrons

Joint Institute for Nuclear Research

Nov. 17th


Michael Metzger

On-line electrochemical mass spectrometry – an operando technique to analyze materials degradation processes in lithium-ion batteries

Dalhousie University

Dec. 15th


Jörg Libuda

In-situ infrared spectroscopy in ultra-high vacuum, in electrochemical, and in photoelectrochemical environments

Friedrich–Alexander University Erlangen–Nürnberg

Jan. 12th


Alexander Föhlisch

Insights from soft x-ray spectroscopy

Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin

Feb. 16th


Axel Knop-Gericke

What do we learn by the application of operando soft X-ray spectroscopy to electrochemical reactions?

Fritz-Haber Insititute

March 9th


Susan Schorr

In situ XRD characterization of temperature-dependent structural changes in photovoltaic materials

Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin


20. 10. 2021 Mikhail Avdeev

In situ/operando studies of electrochemical interfaces with neutrons


A review is given on the recent advances in neutron scattering techniques for studying electrochemical interfaces related mostly to the development of lithium power sources of different types. At present, lithium-ion batteries exhibit the highest specific energy storage capacity, the basis of which is the ability of electrode materials to insert (intercalate) and extract (deintercalate) lithium ions during battery charging/discharging, respectively. Further ways to significantly increase the specific capacity of electrochemical sources today are associated with lithium energy storage devices of non-intercalating type, such as lithium-ion sources with metal anodes or lithium-oxygen cells with carbon-based cathodes. In turn, this determines the need for the development of experimental approaches that would make it possible to perform in situ/operando studies of the structure of electrodes and electrolytes in operating cells. Scattering of thermal (energy <0.5 eV) neutrons has proven to be a promising method for this purpose, which allows tracking the structural evolution of the components of electrochemical cells. The report summarizes the experimental studies and diagnostics of electrochemical interfaces using neutron diffraction, reflectometry and small-angle scattering over the past ten years. The data obtained establish relationships between the microstructure of the components and macroscopic characteristics of electrochemical cells in various conditions. A comparison with similar applications of X-ray scattering at the sources of synchrotron radiation is presented.