Dr. TieJun (TJ) Zhang
Dr. TieJun (TJ) Zhang Professor

Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Prof. TieJun (TJ) Zhang is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the Masdar Institute of Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi and a Member of the Mohammed bin Rashed Academy of Scientists of UAE. He was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in the USA. He received his PhD degree from the City University of Hong Kong (2008) and his MSc & BEng degrees from the Southeast University, China (2004 & 2001). As one of the World’s Top 2% of Scientists, he has over 140 peer-reviewed publications and international patents by spring 2021. As an educator, he has mentored over 40 PhD & MSc students and research staff as well as many intern students.

Prof. Zhang is the recipient of the UAE National Research Foundation University-Industry Research Collaboration Award, the Abu Dhabi Award for Research Excellence, and the US National Academy of Sciences Arab-American Frontiers Fellowship Award. He has been the Principal Investigator of many research projects (over US$10 million) on energy, water and micro/nanotechnologies, and also served as the Principal Scientist leading the Alibaba Cloud-Khalifa University Joint Innovation Laboratory.

Prof. Zhang is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Micro and Nano-Manufacturing of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). He is an active committee member of ASME Nanoengineering Technology Group and ASME Heat Transfer Division Technical Committee. He was the co-chair (Arab-side) of the Fourth Arab-American Frontiers of Science, Engineering and Medicine Symposium between the USA and 22 Arab countries (organized by the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine). He was also the co-chair of the 2018 Materials Research Society Spring Meeting Symposium EN11 Nanomaterials for the Water and Energy Nexus in USA. He has been an invited reviewer for many international research proposals, doctoral dissertations and over 50 scientific journals.


  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (USA), 2011
  • PhD, Mechanical Engineering, City University of Hong Kong, 2008
  • MSc, Thermal Power Engineering, Southeast University (China), 2004
  • BEng, Thermal Power Engineering, Southeast University (China), 2001
  • Courses

    • MEEN761 Advanced Process Dynamics and Control
    • MEEN744 Interfacial Transport and Phase Change Heat Transfer
    • MEEN613 Advanced Heat Transfer
    • MEEN356 Computer-Controlled Systems
    • ENGR113 Introduction to Computing



Research Thrusts

  • Energy and Environment
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Materials Science and Nanotechnology
  • Thermal Science

Research Topics

  • Phase-Change Heat Transfer and Microfluidic Flow
  • Micro-3D Printing and Advanced Nano-Fabrication
  • Concentrated Solar Power Generation and Cooling
  • Subsurface Multiphase Flow and Water Treatment
  • Intelligent Process Control and Machine Learning

Research Projects

  • “Bioinspired Passive Solar Desalination empowered by Micro-3D Printing” (Sponsor: Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge, Principal Investigator, with Co-I: Profs. Faisal AlMarzooqi, Alejandro Galvan, 1/2020-12/2022)

  • “Alibaba Cloud-Khalifa University Joint Innovation Laboratory of Artificial Intelligence for Clean Energy” (Sponsor: Alibaba Cloud, Principal Scientist, 9/2018-12/2020). Main research themes: AI-enabled subsurface energy extraction and gas processing, machine learning-assisted energy materials development and smart manufacturing, and AI/cloud computing-empowered smart renewable energy production.

  • “Environmentally Friendly Refrigeration Cooling” (Khalifa University Competitive Internal Research Award, Principal Investigator, with Co-I: Profs. Lourdes Vega, Maryam Khaleel, Nahla AlAmoodi, 7/2018-6/2021)

  • “Impact of Pore-scale Wettability Changes on Relative Permeability Characterization in Carbonate Reservoirs” (Sponsor: Abu Dhabi National Oil Company R&D Department – Reservoir Characterization and Modeling Program, Principal Investigator, with Co-I: Profs. Mohamed Sassi and Mustapha Jouiad at Masdar Institute, Kean Wang at Petroleum Institute, 12/2015-12/2019)

  • “Energy Efficiency via Nanostructured Condensers for Natural Gas Processing” (Sponsor: Abu Dhabi National Oil Company R&D Department – Energy Efficiency and Environment Program, Principal Investigator, with Profs. Evelyn Wang at MIT and Kean Wang at Petroleum Institute, 10/2015-12/2018)

  • “High-Performance Compact Solar Thermal Power and Cooling Systems” (Masdar Institute-MIT Flagship Research Project, Principal Investigator, with Profs. Evelyn Wang, Gang Chen, Nicholas Fang at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Profs. Amal Al Ghaferi, Weidong Xiao, Peter Armstrong at Masdar Institute, 7/2013-6/2016)

Advisor to the following research staff and students:



Research Scientist


Postdoctoral Research Fellow


PhD Students

    MSc Students