Conclusion

The results presented above, and in the other chapters in this volume, show that SPM studies of electrode surfaces have progressed into maturity. The probe methodology provides important structural information so that many salient issues surrounding the electrified solid-liquid interface can be addressed. The novelty of in -itu imaging with atomic resolution is no longer as great as it was and it is clearly appropriate now to focus on overriding problems in electrochemical surface science. Addressing these problems will require the use of many complementary techniques. Present-day studies focus on problems that are longstanding in electrochemistry. These include the structure of UPD adlayers and their correlation with reactivity, the texture of bulk deposits following addition of standard additives, and adsorption of small model molecules to surfaces. Except through serendipity, successful completion of these studies will not yield technologically relevant advances such as room-temperature direct-methanol-oxidation fuel cells or a universal, robust plating additive. Future efforts must therefore use the structural insight gained from these studies to directly address these important technological goals. These can only be resolved through surface synthetic programs which will make real contributions to electrochemical surface science.

Acknowledgment. This work was funded by the Department of Energy (DE-FG02-91ER45349) through the Frederick Seitz Materials Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois.

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