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

Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Dr. TieJun (TJ) Zhang is an Associate Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering at Masdar Institute, Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi UAE. He was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA. He has mentored over 40 PhD/MSc students and research staffs as well as many intern students.

Dr. 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. In the past few years, he has been the principal investigator of multiple research projects on energy and micro/nanotechnologies (US$10+M). Dr. Zhang has 140+ peer-reviewed publications and patents on phase-change heat transfer and microfluidics, micro-3D printing and advanced nanofabrication, solar power generation and refrigeration cooling, subsurface multiphase flow and water treatment, intelligent process control and machine learning applications.

Dr. Zhang is an active member of American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) NanoEngineering for Energy and Sustainability Steering Committee and ASME Heat Transfer Division K18 Technical Committee. Dr. Zhang was the co-chair (Arab-side) of the Fourth Arab-American Frontiers of Science, Engineering and Medicine Symposium between USA and 22 Arab countries (organized by the US National Academies). He was also the co-chair of 2018 MRS 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
  • Interfacial Transport and Phase Change Heat Transfer
  • Advanced Process Dynamics and Control
  • Advanced Heat Transfer
  • Computer-Controlled Systems
  • Introduction to Computing using Matlab

Advisor to the following research staff and students:

Research Scientist

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

PhD Students

MSc Student


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)