An apparatus and method for the synthesis and treatment of electrocatalyst particles in batch or continuous fashion is provided. In one embodiment, the apparatus is comprised of a three-electrode cell which includes a reference electrode, a counter electrode, and a working electrode. The working electrode is preferably a cylindrical vessel having an electrically conductive region. The electrode assembly is introduced into a slurry containing metal ions and a plurality of particles. During operation an electrical potential is applied and the working electrode is rotated at a predetermined speed. When particles in the slurry collide with the electrically conductive region the transferred charge facilitates deposition of an adlayer of the desired metal. In this manner film growth can commence on a large number of particles simultaneously. This process is especially suitable as a commercial thin film deposition process for forming catalytically active layers on nanoparticles for use in energy conversion devices.