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The society for solid-state and electrochemical science and technology
The society for solid-state and electrochemical science and technology

The Electrochemical Society is a learned society (professional association) based in the United States that supports scientific inquiry in the field of electrochemistry and solid-state science and technology. The society membership comprises more than 8,000 scientists and engineers in over 70 countries worldwide who hold individual membership, as well as roughly 100 corporations and laboratories that hold corporate membership.


In November 1901, Charles John Reed set out on a mission to create a new society in order to more quickly and efficiently exchange information and ideas among those interested in electrochemistry. With the help of friend and professor Joseph W. Richards, the two men started what is the modern day Electrochemical Society.

April 3 of 1902 marked the first meeting of the "American Electrochemical Society" at the Manufacturers' Club in Philadelphia. Co-founder Joseph W. Richards was named president – a post which he kept until 1904, the year that marked the end of his two-year presidential term.

After his term as president ended, Richards took on the post of secretary, which coincided with a decreasing membership and bankrupt treasury. Richards looked to the more business minded members in order to develop advertisements to stimulate both membership growth and the interests of members.

With the end of the war, the year 1919 saw a return to more normal scientific concerns, such as the report of the Committee on the Algebraic Signs of the Electrode Potentials.[1]

Colin Fink was secretary from 1921 to 1947. During this period, Robert M. Burns became a force for positive change in the society. He was influential in establishing the "patron" grade of membership. This level of membership allowed companies to support the society directly rather than through advertising. Burns was among those who encouraged publication of the Corrosion Handbook – the second in the series of the Electrochemical Society monographs. Burns also suggested a change in meeting and publication policies, of which authors now only had to submit abstracts of their papers.[1]


The society holds meetings in the spring and fall of each year.


ECS publishes peer-reviewed technical journals, proceedings, monographs, conference abstracts, and a quarterly news magazine.

The quarterly publication Interface provides a forum for the exchange of ideas and news within international scientific community at-large.

Contains extended abstracts of the technical papers presented at the spring and fall meetings of ECS.

An online proceedings database of full-text content from ECS and ECS sponsored conferences.

Open access

Part of the society's mission is to disseminate research as widely as possible. Hence, the organization tries to expand the number of articles published as open access. Authors are offered the choice of publishing their articles as open access at the point of submitting their manuscript[2] and if they are members, or are from an institution that subscribes to ECS Plus,[3] article processing charges are waived.[4]


The society recognizes members for outstanding technical achievement in electrochemical and solid-state science and technology with a number of different awards.

ECS's most prestigious award, the Edward Goodrich Acheson Award, established in 1928, is presented in even-numbered years for "conspicuous contribution to the advancement of the objectives, purposes, and activities of the society".[5]

The Olin Palladium Award (formerly the Palladium Medal Award), established in 1950, is presented in odd-numbered years to recognize "distinguished contributions to the field of electrochemical or corrosion science."[6]

Notable members

The most notable members include:

  • Lawrence Addicks (1878-1964), president of the Electrochemical Society from 1915 to 1916.
  • Thomas Edison: Edison became a member on April 4, 1903. Early members, such as Charles Burgess, recall attending a meeting at Edison's home in the early days of the society.[1] Most recognized for the invention of the phonograph, the motion picture camera, and the practical electric light bulb – Edison's contributions to electrochemistry were monumental.[7]
  • Gordon Moore: Known for his 1965 principal for the delivery of more powerful and lower costing semiconductor chips, which was later dubbed Moore's law – Moore continues to be committed to progress in science and technology.[8]
  • Edward Goodrich Acheson: Recognized for inventing the Acheson process and being a manufacturer of carborundum and graphite, Acheson is among the society's most prestigious members.[9]
  • Herbert Dow: Among his most significant achievements, Dow founded the Dow Chemical Company in 1897.[10]
  • Norman Hackerman: Known internationally as an expert in metal corrosion, Hackerman is most recognized for developing the electrochemistry of oxidation.
  • Carl Wagner: Often referred to as the father of solid state chemistry, Wagner's work on oxidation rate theory, counter diffusion of ions, and defect chemistry considerably advanced our knowledge of how reactions proceed at the atomic level in the solid state.
  • Charles W. Tobias: As former president of the society and pioneer in the field of electrochemical engineering, Tobias was instrumental in the advancement of electrochemical science. Through his role in forming the Chemical Engineering Department at Berkeley in 1947, Tobias made a long-lasting and far-reaching impact on the field.[11]
  • Leo Baekeland: Aside from holding the post of president of the society in 1909,[12] Baekland is most famously known for inventing Bakelite in 1907. Baekeland's entrepreneurial genius and inventive nature made him one of the most important players in chemical technology.[13]
  • Edward Weston: Noted for his achievements in electroplating, Weston developed the electrochemical cell – named the Weston cell, for the voltage standard.[14]
  • Charles Martin Hall: Hall is best known for inventing an inexpensive process to produce aluminum.[15]
  • Willis R. Whitney: Among his many achievements, Whitney is most recognized for founding the research laboratory of the General Electric Company.[16]
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