Principal Investigator

Zhiting Tian

Assistant Professor
Eugene A. Leinroth Sesquicentennial Faculty Fellow
Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Cornell University



  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, MIT (2014)
  • M.S., Mechanical Engineering, State University of New York at Binghamton (2009)
  • B.E., Engineering Physics, Tsinghua University, China (2007)

Awards & Honors

  • College of Engineering Faculty Fellow, Virginia Tech (2018)
  • Office of Naval Research (ONR) Young Investigator Award (2018)
  • NSF CAREER Award (2017)
  • ACS Petroleum Research Fund Doctoral New Investigator Award (2017)
  • College of Engineering Outstanding New Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech (2017)
  • 3M Non-Tenured Faculty Award (2017)
  • Scholar of the Week, Office of Vice President for Research, Virginia Tech (2016)
  • College of Engineering Undergraduate Research Advisor Award, Virginia Tech (2016)
  • NSF ASSIST Grant for Academic Leadership for Women in Engineering, Society of Women Engineers (2016)
  • Assistant Professor Mentoring Grant, Office of Executive Vice President and Provost, Virginia Tech (2015)
  • Wunsch Foundation Silent Hoist and Crane Award for Academic Excellence, MIT (2014)
  • Graduate Women of Excellence, MIT (2013)
  • Keck Travel Award in Thermal Sciences, MIT (2012)
  • NSF Summer Institute Fellowship on Energy Manufacturing (2011)


  • Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech (2014-2018)


PhD Students

Hao Ma
Hao earned his B.S. degree in Materials Science from University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 2014.

Personal Website


  • International Travel Bursary at Phononics (3 out of over 300 students) (2017)
  • IEEE Travel Grant for ITHERM (2017)
  • NSF Travel Grant for IMECE (2016)
  • 18th National School on Neutron and X-ray Scattering (2016)
Eurydice Kanimba
Eurydice earned her B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Midwestern State University in 2015. Eurydice is a New Horizon Graduate Scholar.


  • ASME Foundation Variable International Scholarship (2017)
  • Nuts, Bolts & Thingamajigs John Grossheim Memorial Scholarship (2017)
  • NSBE 42nd Convention Sponsorship by WestRock (2016)
  • ASME-ESP Petroleum Division Academic Scholarship (2015)
Chen Li
Chen earned his B.S. degree in Applied Physics from University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 2015. He is a member of Tau Beta Pi, The Engineering Honor Society.


  • 19th National School on Neutron and X-ray Scattering (2017)
  • VTGSA Travel Grant to attend IMECE (2016)
Yunwei Ma
Yunwei earned his B.S. degree in Applied Physics from University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 2016.


Master Students

Daniel Cooke
Daniel earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech in May 2017.


Undergraduate Students

Erica O’Donnel
VT Honors College
Ahmed Elnahhas
VT Honors College



Tra Lai
Summer 2017. REU student from Texas A&M University.
Clayton Mottley
Summer 2017 – Spring 2017. University Honors.
Kody Cobb
Fall 2016. University Honors.
Tony Consiglio
Summer 2015 – Spring 2016. University Honors. Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. Received Honors Diploma in 2017.
Edward Tang
Summer 2015 – Fall 2015.
Jude Anderson
Spring 2015 – Fall 2015
Samantha Everett
Spring 2015 – Fall 2015
Brandon Nguyen
Spring 2015-Summer 2015


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