Junior Investigator - 3 year fellowship - Innovate Massive Data Processing Methods to Boost the Analysis of Lithium-ion Battery Characterizations at Large-scale Facilities

The CEA Tech Science Impulse research fellowship offers you an exciting opportunity to develop your research career while pursuing the lines of scientific inquiry that matter most to you. During three-year fellowship, your will gain valuable experience leading a research project and make a positive impact on society.

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🎓 Qualification : PhD • 🤝 Employment type : 3 year contract • 📍 Location : Grenoble, France

CEA-Liten is seeking an accomplished junior investigator to drive advances in massive data processing methods to enhance the analysis of lithium-ion battery characterizations on large scientific instruments. The winner of this three-year Science Impulse fellowship will manage their own groundbreaking research project and have an opportunity to work with CEA-Liten and other research teams and will have access to the ESRF synchrotron.


Lithium-ion batteries are not new and are very widely used. However, producing ultra-high performance, safe, and sustainable Li-ion batteries is still a challenge—one that will need to be overcome to support the growth of electric mobility and portable and stationary energy storage solutions. Engineering new battery materials and chemistries and developing advanced characterization tools and methods to probe the bulk and interfacial properties of active battery materials will drive advances.
In situ and in operando investigations in realistic conditions are garnering increasing interest, and scientists are turning to synchrotron-based techniques to observe a wide variety of battery technologies in real time. Synchrotron imaging has the capacity to provide unique insights into the chemical, morphological, and structural changes inside electrodes and electrolytes across multiple length scales with high time and spatial resolution.

Scope and applications

To tackle this formidable challenge, CEA researchers have developed several specific electrochemical cells that allow the acquisition of in situ and/or in operando data while maintaining a reasonable level of electrochemical performance. One major focus has been using different tomography techniques to obtain volumetric data. Standard-absorption tomography utilizes the contrast created by the different electronic densities of the materials to reconstruct a 3D image of the system so that changes in the morphologies of the materials being studied can be observed. For X-Ray diffraction-computed tomography (XRD-CT), the information contained in the voxel is an X-ray diffractogram that provides information about the crystalline structure of the material and changes to this structure during cycling. These techniques can be coupled within the same system, but the sizes of the volumes that can be investigated and the resolutions obtained are different.

These advanced characterization techniques have the potential to be transformative, but they generate massive amounts of data. To live up to their promises, these techniques will have to be supported by robust, fast, and physically accurate visualization, processing, correlative analysis methods.

Job description

The proposed research should focus specifically on the analysis of 3D and 4D spatial and temporal data sets acquired through X-ray microtomography, nanotomography, neutron tomography, XRD-CT, SAXS/WAXS-CT, and other advanced imaging techniques. The volume reconstruction, segmentation, and analysis of tomography data is currently a labor intensive manual or semi-automated process.

The proposed research should aim to automate the workflow from data collection to data reconstruction and develop dedicated machine learning algorithms tailored to the imaging techniques used to accelerate data processing.

CEA-Liten is seeking an accomplished junior investigator to bring its research to the forefront of massive data processing methods. The project will be part of the strategic “Battery Hub” partnership with the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF). With the Battery Hub, the CEA is spearheading a three-year test phase that includes priority access to the ESRF for battery experiments. In addition to this opportunity to use the facilities at ESRF, the successful candidate will also benefit from CEA-Liten’s battery expertise. As principal investigator, the candidate will be in charge of the project and must be capable of working in a very multidisciplinary environment with teams from across CEA-Liten and with CEA partners.

Biblio references

  • G. Tonin, G. Vaughan, R. Bouchet, F. Alloin, C. Barchasz, Operando X-ray absorption tomography for the characterization of lithium metal electrode morphology and heterogeneity in a liquid Li/S cell, J. Power Sources, 2022, 520, 230854
  • S. Tardif, N. Dufour, J.F. Colin, G. Gebel, M. Burghammer, A. Johannes, S. Lyonnard & M. Chandesris Contribution of operando X-ray experiments and modeling to the understanding of the heterogeneous lithiation of a graphite electrode, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 2021, 9, 4281
  • Vorauer, T.; Kumar, P.; Berhaut, C. L.; Chamasemani, F. F.; Jouneau, P.-H.; Aradilla, D.; Tardif, S.; Pouget, S.; Fuchsbichler, B.; Helfen, Lukas; Atalay, S.; Widanage, W. D.; Koller, S.; Lyonnard, S.; Brunner, R*. Multi-scale quantification and modeling of aged nanostructured silicon-based composite anodes, Communication Chemistry, 2020, 3, 141C
  • Berhaut, D. Dominguez, P. Kumar, P.-H. Jouneau, W. Porcher, D. Aradilla, S. Tardif, S. Pouget, S. Lyonnard, Multiscale Multiphase Lithiation and Delithiation Mechanisms in a Composite Electrode Unraveled by Simultaneous Operando Small-Angle and Wide-Angle X-Ray Scattering, ACS Nano, 2019, 13, 11538
  • G. Tonin, G. Vaughan, R. Bouchet, F. Alloin, M. Di Michel, L. Boutafa, J.-F. Colin, C. Barchasz, Multiscale characterization of a lithium/sulfur battery by coupling operando X-ray tomography and spatially-resolved diffraction, Scientific Reports, 2017, 7, 2755

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