Dr Zhi-Gang Chen

Honorary Associate Professor

School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering
Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology

Overview

Dr Zhigang Chen is currently an Honorary Associate Professor in the School of Mechanical & Mining Engineering, the University of Queensland. Dr Chen received his PhD from the Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2008, on controllable synthesis, growth mechanisms, and properties of quasi-one-dimensional ZnS and BN semiconductor nanomaterials, under the supervision of Professor Hui-Ming Cheng, and Professor Gaoqing (Max) Lu. His research focuses on thermoelectrics for power generation and cooling; next-generation optoelectronic devices and functional System; topological insulators for next-generation chips; and high-speed sensors. As a lead Chief Investigator or Chief Investigator, Dr Chen has succeeded in winning 3 ARC Discovery grants (two are first lead CI and other one is APD Fellow), 1 ARC Linkage, 1 ARC LIEF grant, several Industry Investment, 2 Queensland smart future funds, 1 international linkage grant from the Australian Academy of Sciences, 1 UQ foundation excellence Award, and 4 UQ grants. Dr Chen has contributed more than 130 original journal publications (including top ranking journals, such as Nature Nanotechnology, Nature Communications, Advanced Materials, Journal of the American Chemical Society, Angewandte Chemie-International Edition, Energy & Environmental Science, Nano Letters, Advanced Functional Materials, Advanced Energy Materials, and Nano Energy), 4 patents, and over 30 invited talks or oral presentations. His publications have been cited > 6000 times (ISI web) with H index of 39.

Research Interests

  • Design inexpensive, abundant, low-toxic and high-efficiency thermoelectric nanomaterials
    Thermoelectric materials directly convert thermal energy into electrical energy, offering a green and sustainable solution for the global energy dilemma. This proposal aims to develop inexpensive, abundant, and low-toxic thermoelectric nanomaterials for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel industry-level approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies.
  • Topological Insulators
    High-Speed Hard Drive: Topological Insulators Open a Path to Room-Temperature Spintronics

Research Impacts

Thermoelectric materials for power generation and cooling

Identifying new approaches to develop energy-saving methods and tap into new renewable energy sources is set to be the greatest challenge of the 21st Century. Thermoelectric (TE) energy is one of the approaches that offers great promise as it can be used in multiple applications for power generation and refrigeration. It can create electricity from waste heat at any scale, it can significantly improve energy efficiency at a medium industrial scale, including significantly improving vehicular weight and emissions, and it can even generate electricity or cooling at the nanoscale. For instance, it could potentially be used to convert body heat into electricity in clothing or to charge a cell phone. The thermoelecric materials developed by Dr Chen have extremely high hopes for this technology.

Topological insulators for high speed chips

Imagine if the "information superhighway" had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. New topological insulators developed by Dr Chen will be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.

Qualifications

  • PhD in Materials Science and Engineering, Chinese Acad.Sc.

Publications

  • Hong, Min, Chen, Zhi-Gang, Yang, Lei, Chasapis, Thomas C., Kang, Stephen Dongmin, Zou, Yichao, Auchterlonie, Graeme John, Kanatzidis, Mercouri G., Snyder, G. Jeffrey and Zou, Jin (2017) Enhancing the thermoelectric performance of SnSe1-xTex nanoplates through band engineering. Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 5 21: 10713-10721. doi:10.1039/c7ta02677c

  • Wang, Peng, Liu, Shanshan, Luo, Wenjin, Fang, Hehai, Gong, Fan, Guo, Nan, Chen, Zhi-Gang, Zou, Jin, Huang, Yan, Zhou, Xiaohao, Wang, Jianlu, Chen, Xiaoshuang, Lu, Wei, Xiu, Faxian and Hu, Weida (2017) Arrayed van der Waals broadband detectors for dual-band detection. Advanced Materials, 29 16: . doi:10.1002/adma.201604439

  • Zhang, Cheng, Zhang, Enze, Wang, Weiyi, Liu, Yanwen, Chen, Zhi-Gang , Lu, Shiheng, Liang, Sihang, Cao, Junzhi, Yuan, Xiang, Tang, Lei, Li, Qian, Zhou, Chao, Gu, Teng, Wu, Yizheng, Zou, Jin and Xiu, Faxian (2017) Room-temperature chiral charge pumping in Dirac semimetals. Nature Communications, 8 . doi:10.1038/ncomms13741

View all Publications

Supervision

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • The direct energy conversion between heat and electricity, based on thermoelectric effects without moving parts, has been considered as a green and sustainable solution to the global energy dilemma. This project aims to develop novel band-engineered metal selenides for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel microwave assisted wet chemistry approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The key breakthrough is to design high performance metal selenide thermoelectrics for satisfying the high efficiency solid-state devices. The expected outcomes will lead to an innovative technology that waste heat recovery and refrigeration, which will place Australia at the forefront of practical energy technologies.

  • Superfast information technology had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. This project aims to develop new topological insulators using chemical vapor depostion and coupling unique nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The ultimate target is to be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Chen, Zhi-Gang, Zou, Jin and Cheng, Hui-Ming (2015). Fabrication, characterization, and application of boron nitride nanomaterials. In Ying (Ian) Chen (Ed.), Nanotubes and nanosheets: functionalization and applications of boron nitride and other nanomaterials (pp. 91-111) Boca Raton, FL, United States: CRC Press. doi:10.1201/b18073-6

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Chen, Z., Yang, M., Kang, L. and Liu, F. (2015). Feasibility test of non-iterative reconstruction for high spatiotemporal resolution DCE, investigation of acoustic noise reduction method for MRI-LINAC hybrid system. In: Proceedings of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM): 23rd Scientific Meeting and Exhibition. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), Toronto, Canada, (). 30 May - 5 June 2015.

  • Zou, Yichao, Chen, Zhi-Gang, Huang, Yang, Drennan, John and Zou, Jin (2014). Au-catalyzed and catalyst-free growth of one-dimensional Bi2Se3 nanostructures. In: Lorenzo Faraone and Mariusz Martyniuk, COMMAD 2014 Conference Proceedings. Conference on Optoelectronic and Microelectronic Materials and Devices, Perth, WA, Australia, (11-14). 14-17 December 2014. doi:10.1109/COMMAD.2014.7038638

  • Liao, Z. M., Xu, H. Y., Sun, W., Guo, Y. N., Yang, L., Chen, Z. G., Zou, J., Lu, Z. Y., Chen, P. P. and Lu, W. (2012). Effects of Au catalyst on GaAs (111)(B) surface during annealing. In: COMMAD 2012 Proceedings. 2012 Conference on Optoelectronic and Microelectronic Materials & Devices (COMMAD 2012), Melbourne, Australia, (7-8). 12-14 December 2012. doi:10.1109/COMMAD.2012.6472333

  • Chen, Zhigang, Lu, G. Q. and Zou, J. (2010). Growth of ZnS heterostructures for optoelectronic applications. In: COMMAD 2010 Proceedings: 2010 Conference on Optoelectronic and Microelectronic Materials and Devices. 2010 Conference on Optoelectronic and Microelectronic Materials and Devices (COMMADD 2010), Canberra, Australia, (215-216). 12-15 December 2010. doi:10.1109/COMMAD.2010.5699747

  • Chen, Zhi-Gang, Zou, Jin and Lu, (Max) Gaoqing (2010). ZnS nanostructures for field emitters. In: Andrew Dzurak, ICONN 2010: Proceedings of the 2010 International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology. 2010 International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICONN 2010), Sydney, Australia, (21-23). 22-26 Feb 2010. doi:10.1109/ICONN.2010.6045161

  • Chen, Z. G., Zou, J., Li, F., Cheng, H. M. and Lu, G. Q. (2007). Growth of magnetic yard-glass shaped boron nitride nanotubes with periodic iron nanoparticles. In: The 4th China-Korea Workshop on Nanotubes and Nanowires. The 4th China-Korea Workshop on Nanotubes and Nanowires, Yanji, China, (). 27-30 May, 2007.

  • Chen, Zhi-Gang, Zou, Jin, Lu, Gao Qing, Liu, Gang, Li, Feng and Cheng, Hui-Ming (2007). Improved property of core/shell ZnS/BN nanowires. In: Materials Today Asia 2007, Beijing, China, (). 3-5 September, 2007.

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Master Philosophy — Joint Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • The direct energy conversion between heat and electricity, based on thermoelectric effects without moving parts, has been considered as a green and sustainable solution to the global energy dilemma. This project aims to develop novel band-engineered metal selenides for high-efficiency energy conversion using novel microwave assisted wet chemistry approach, coupled with nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The key breakthrough is to design high performance metal selenide thermoelectrics for satisfying the high efficiency solid-state devices. The expected outcomes will lead to an innovative technology that waste heat recovery and refrigeration, which will place Australia at the forefront of practical energy technologies.

  • Superfast information technology had HOV lanes so that data could be stored, processed and disseminated many times faster than possible with today's electronics. This project aims to develop new topological insulators using chemical vapor depostion and coupling unique nanostructure and band engineering strategies. The ultimate target is to be used for this new generation devices, such a speedway for future devices, an exotic type of electrical conductor.