Zhiping XU Associate Professor
Our lab's research thrust is focused on understanding basic energy processes in nanoscale and biological materials and devices. Based on intensive computational studies across multiscale and multiphysics, the goal is to make predictions for materials and integrated device systems in energy-related applications, to propose novel concepts by integrating biological inspiration and the cutting-edge nanotechnology.
We apply numerical methods and simulation tools in the our research. These techniques include quantum Monte-Carlo methods and density functional theory for electronic structures, Monte-Carlo and molecular dynamics for classical atomistic system, continuum modeling such as finite element and finite difference methods, and also coarse-grained methods bridging them.
We are pushing the limits of our theoretical and computational efforts to the critical topics such as sustainable energy problems nowadays. Our most current research involves development of materials and devices to help energy harvesting, and also reach a lower energy comsumption. For example, we are looking for efficient thermal management network, high-performance thermal and electrical transport grids, photovoltaic and thermoelectric devices, and tunable hydrogen storage materials.
Energetic processes in nanoscale and biological materials and devices
Computer simulation techniques and their applications in science and engineering
Recent Publications, Presentations and Events
23. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Geometry controls conformation of graphene sheets: membranes, ribbons and scrolls, ACS Nano (in the press)
22. K. Xue and Z. Xu*, Hydrogenation of carbon nanotubes: roles of symmetry and strain, Journal of Computational and Theoretical Nanoscience (in the press)
21. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Mechanical energy transfer and dissipation in fibrous beta-sheet rich proteins, Physical Review E 81 (6), 061910-6 (2010)
20. Z. Xu, R. Paparcone and M. J. Buehler, Alzheimer’s Aβ(1-40) amyloid fibrils feature size dependent mechanical properties, Biophysical Journal 98 (10), 2053-2062 (2010)
19. S. Keten, Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Nanoconfinement controls stiffness, strength and mechanical toughness of beta-sheet crystals in silk, Nature Materials 9 (4), 359-367 (2010)
MIT Spotlight “Unraveling silks’ secrets”; PhysOrg News “New analysis of the structure of silks explains paradox of super-strength”; Telegraph News “Spider silk research could lead to new super-materials”; CNET News ;“Spider silk secrets could spin cheaper fibers”; R&D News “Silk's secrets revealed”
18. M. J. Buehler and Z. Xu, Mind the helical crack (News and Views), Nature 464 (7285), 42-43 (2010)
17. K. Xue and Z. Xu*, Strain effects on basal-plane hydrogenation of graphene: a first-principles study, Applied Physics Letters 96 (6), 063103-3 (2010)
16. Z. Xu* and K. Xue, Engineering graphene by oxidation: a first principles study, Nanotechnology 21 (4), 045704-7 (2010)
Nanotechweb Lab Talk “Nanoengineering graphene with oxygen”
15. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Nanoengineering heat transfer performance at carbon nanotube interfaces, ACS Nano 3 (9), 2767-2775 (2009)
14. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Hierarchical graphene nanoribbon assemblies feature unique electronic and mechanical properties, Nanotechnology 20 (37), 375704-8 (2009)
Nanotechweb Lab Talk ''Scaling up graphene nanoribbons - a bioinspired solution"; Nanowerk "Protein-inspired graphene design bridges nano- to macroscale"
13. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Hierarchical nanostructures are crucial to mitigate ultra-small thermal point loads, Nano Letters 9 (5), 2065-2072 (2009)
Nature Highlights "The new heat order", Nature 458 (7240), 811 (2009); MIT Spotlight "Taking the heat off"; ScienceDaily "Biomimetic-engineering design can replace spaghetti tangle of nanotubes in novel material"; Intech "Heat is on for NEMS"
12. Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Strain controlled reversible thermomutabability in single-walled carbon nanotubes, Nanotechnology 20 (18), 185701-6 (2009)
11. Z. Xu*, Graphene nanoribbon under tension, Journal of Computational and Theoretical Nanoscience 6 (3), 625-628 (2009)
10. L. Ci, Z. Xu, L. Wang, W. Gao, F. Ding, B. I. Yakobson, P. M. Ajayan, Nanocutting of graphene, Nano Research 1 (2), 116-122 (2008)
9. Z. Xu, L. Wang and Q. Zheng, Enhanced mechanical properties of prestressed multi-walled carbon nanotubes, Small 4 (6), 733-737 (2008)
Nature News "Carbon nanotubes: From stress to strength"
8. Z. Xu, Q. Zheng, Q. Jiang, C. Ma, Y. Zhao, G. Chen, H. Gao and G. Ren, Transphonon effects in ultrafast nanodevices, Nanotechnology 19 (25), 255705-5 (2008)
Nanotechweb News "Nanotubes go transphononic"
7. Z. Xu*, Energy dissipation in the double-walled carbon nanotube based mechanical oscillators, Journal of Computational and Theoretical Nanoscience 5 (4), 655-658 (2008)
6. Z. Xu, Q. Zheng and G. Chen, Thermally driven large-amplitude fluctuations in carbon-nanotube-based devices, Physical Review B 75 (19), 195445-4 (2007)
5. Z. Xu, Q. Zheng and G. Chen, Elementary building blocks of graphene-nanoribbon-based electronic devices, Applied Physics Letters 90 (22), 223115-3 (2007)
4. Y. Zhao, C. Ma, L. Wong, G. Chen, Z. Xu, Q. Zheng, Q. Jiang and A. T. Chwang, Quansi-reversible energy flows in carbon-nanotube-based oscillators, Journal of Computational and Theoretical Nanoscience 3 (5), 852-856 (2006)
3. Y. Zhao, C. Ma, L. Wong, G. Chen, Z. Xu, Q. Zheng, Q. Jiang and A. T. Chwang, Energy exchanges in carbon nanotube oscillators, Nanotechnology 17 (4), 1032-1035 (2006)
2. Q. Xia, D. Wei, Z. Xu and Q. Zheng, Estimate of effective properties of metal particle tape based on micromechanics, Chinese Journal of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics 28 (3), 323-329 (2006) (in Chinese)
1. Z. Xu, L. Wang and Q. Zheng, Mechanics of carbon nanotubes, Advances in Mechanics 34 (1), 97-138 (2004) (Translation in Chinese)
Z. Xu, Nanoengineering on graphene and related materials, Intech (Invited)
S. Keten, J. Bertaud, D. Sen, Z. Xu, T. Ackbarow, M. J. Buehler, Chapter 17, Multiscale modeling of biological protein materials – deformation and failure, In Trends in Computational Nanomechanics, Springer, 2009
Q. Zheng, L. Wang and Z. Xu, Chapter 5: Multi-discipline nanomechanics, In Micro-systems and Nanotechnology, Beijing: Tsinghua University Press, 2007 (in Chinese)
Z. Xu, Mechanical energy transfer in biological materials, International Conference for Mechanical Properties of Materials, HangZhou
Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Thermomutability in carbon nanostructures and biological materials, MRS Fall Meeting, 2009
Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Bioinspired materials for nanoscale thermal management, MRS Fall Meeting, 2009
Z. Xu and M. J. Buehler, Bioinspired materials for large scale electronic applications, MRS Fall Meeting, 2009
Z. Xu, Dynamics of graphite micro-flakes, APS March Meeting, 2008
Z. Xu, Q. Zheng, G. Chen and Q. Jiang, Carbon nanotube based nano-electromechanical systems, The 5th International Conference of Nonlinear Mechanics, Shanghai, 2007
Z. Xu, Y. Liu and Q. Zheng, Thermally driven large-amplitude fluctuations in carbon-nanotube-based devices, The 5th International Conference of Nonlinear Mechanics, Shanghai, 2007
Q. Zheng, Z. Xu and G. Chen, Carbon nanotube based nanoelectromechanical systems, Croucher Advanced Study Institutes workshop: Nano Science & Technology: From Basic Science to Device Applications, Hong Kong, 2007
Z. Xu, Irregular dynamics in ultrafast nano-devices, The 7th International Conference on Fracture and Strength of Solids, Urumqi, 2007
Q. Zheng and Z. Xu, Friction and energy dissipation of nano-mechanical devices in carbon molecular system, 1st International Conference on Fracture and Damage of Advanced Materials, HangZhou
Z. Xu, L. Wang, B. Jiang and Q. Zheng, Mechanical effects with covalent linking adjacent carbon nanotubes, 1st International Conference on Fracture and Damage of Advanced Materials, HangZhou
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