Many of the pioneering techniques in the diagnostics of electrochemical systems originated at Berkeley Lab.  From some of the early experiments in in situ ellipsometry of growing films on surfaces, to present day experiments at the Advanced Light Source (ALS), Berkeley Lab has been at the forefront of electrochemical characterization.  We specialize in in situin operando, and ex situ studies of the fundamental structure and
changes of materials and their interfaces.




  • Experimental methodologies required for advanced characterization of materials, electrodes, interphases, and interfaces at high spatial, energy, and temporal resolution.
  • Cutting-edge far- and near-field optical and scanning probe techniques.
  • Differential electrochemical mass spectrometry for quantitative gas evolution analysis in operando.
  • High throughput characterization (XRD, ICP, TGA, Raman) through Molecular Foundry proposal.
  • Synchrotron-based techniques (XRD, XAS, TXM etc) through SSRL proposal.
  • Access to ALS and NCEM through pre-approved proposals.


  • Optical, X-ray, electron, vibrational, calorimetry, and synchrotron-based spectroscopies and spectromicroscopies.
  • Field emission scanning electron microscopy (SEM), including STEM and EDS.
  • Cross-section polisher for SEM sample preparation.
  • Dilatometry for solid ceramic samples.
  • X-ray powder diffraction capabilities, including capillary spinner and hot stage for structural characterization at temperatures up to 1200°C under controlled atmospheres (nitrogen, argon, etc.)
  • Numerous materials characterization techniques, including differential scanning calorimetry, thermal gravimetric analysis, mass spectrometry, gel permeation chromatography, inductively coupled plasma - optical emission spectrometry, dynamic mechanical analysis, Karl Fischer titration (water content analysis), infrared spectroscopy, BET surface area analysis, and particle size analysis.

Berkeley Lab Principal Investigators