• About Us

    Sustainable energy storage, biodegradable materials, and manufacturing play essential roles in our everyday life. Meeting the needs of society and linking Nature with people through technologies, our research interests include sustainable energy storage, multifunctional materials, and advanced manufacturing. Using sustainable natural materials to develop multifunctional materials and advanced devices for future technologies may reduce our dependence on petroleum and enable implantable devices. Based on our research interests and expertise in manufacturing, biomaterials, energy storage, and flexible device, our goal is to make energy storage safer, cheaper, and have higher performance, and to explore multifunctional materials from Nature. Meanwhile, we are interested in applying the highspeed roll-to-roll to the emerging advanced manufacturing. Our research is highly interdisciplinary, encompassing scales from the nanoscopic to macroscopic, and system level.

    News and Events

  • Our work on 'Lightweight and Construable Magnetic Wood for Electromagnetic Interference Shielding' is featured on Advanced Science News .
  • Congratulations on Chao's review about 'Biopolymers derived from trees as sustainable multifunctional materials' is accepted in Advanced Materials.
  • Congratulate Alolika on passing her defense on 'Towards Building a Sustainable, High performance, and Affordable Redox Flow Battery'! Good job, Alolika.
  • Our work entitled "Stable and Highly Ion-Selective Membrane Made from Cellulose Nanocrystals for Aqueous Redox Flow Batteries" is covered by multiple medias.
  • Congratulate Avi got the Fulbright Globalink MITACS Award! He will participate and travel to Canada for the Summer to work on oil repellent materials!
  • As of November 2019, our article titled “Two-Dimensional Water-Coupled Metallic MoS2 with Nanochannels for Ultrafast Supercapacitors” received high citations to place it in the top 1% of the academic field of Chemistry!
  • Dr. Zhu is co-organizing Symposium EN03 in MRS Fall: Green Electrochemical Energy Storage Solutions—Materials, Processes and Devices, 11th October, 2019.
  • Our fundamental study on Li metal dendrite suppression through space confine and uniform Li plating/stripping by evenly distributing current and ions on uniform curvature is accepted in Advanced Energy Materials.
  • Our work supported by Rogers Corporation on ion selective memberane for aqueous flow batteries is accepted in Nano Letters
  • Dr. Zhu gave an invited talk at Umass Amherst on the topic of 'High Performance Energy Storage and Sustainable Nature-derived Multifunctional Materials', 11th October, 2019.
  • Congratulations for Tim and Yubin's work entitled 'Stable Thiophosphate-based All-Solid-State Lithium Batteries through Conformally Interfacial Nano Coating' is accepted in Nano Letters.
  • Congratulations for Alolika and Yang's work entitled 'Mass Transfer and Reaction Kinetic Enhanced Electrode for High-Performance Aqueous Flow Batteries' is accepted in Advanced Functional Materials.
  • Congratulations for Qing's paper 'Sulfide-based Solid-state Electrolytes: Synthesis, Stability and Potential for All Solid-state Batteries' is accepted in Advanced Materials.
  • Dr. Zhu is featured on Advanced Science News .
  • Dr. Zhu co-organized sympostium on 'New Carbon for Energy—Materials, Chemistry and Applications' at MRS 2019 Spring Meeting.
  • Our project on solid state battery is funded by Rogers Corporation.
  • Zheng's work is highlighted as front cover paper in Advanced Optical Materials! We designed a free-standing chiral plasmonic film by co-assembling rod-like cellulose nanocrystals and anisotropic plasmonic gold nanorods, Read Now.
  • Our Tier 1 with Prof. Lopez on organic flow batteries is awarded!
  • Our work entitled '3D Printed High Performance Lithium Metal Microbatteries Enabled by Nanocellulose from Trees' is accepted in Advanced Materials. Congratulations, Tim.
  • Our work entitled 'Bacterial-Derived, Compressible, and Hierarchical Porous Carbon for High-Performance Potassium-Ion Batteries' is accepted in Nano Letters.
  • We congratuate Yucong on getting full professor position in Donghua University (Shanghai). We wish Yucong the best of luck in his new position.
  • Our work on Metallic Molybdenum Disulfide for Stable, High-Rate Battery Performance has been highlighted on Advanced Science News .
  • Congratulations for Yucong's review paper 'Metallic MoS2 for High Performance Energy Storage and Energy Conversion' is accepted in SMALL.
  • Congratulations for Ahmed's work entitled 'Stable Metal Anode Enabled by Porous Lithium Foam with Superior Ion Accessibility' is accepted in Advanced Materials.
  • Our work on metal-free aqueous flow battery with novel ultrafiltered lignin as electrolyte has online. Congratulations, Jonathan and Alolika!
  • Congratulations for Alolika's work highlighted on multimedias. Nice work, Alolika!
  • Congratulations for Alolika's work entitled 'Heavy Metal-Free Tannin from Bark for Sustainable Energy Storage' is accepted in Nano Letters.
  • Our project on ion selective memberane is funded by Rogers Corporation.
  • Congratulations for Yucong's work on ion transport nanotubeofiber is accepted in Advanced Energy Materials.
  • Congratulations for our work entitled 'Metallic and highly conducting two-dimensional atomic arrays of sulfur enabled by molybdenum disulfide nanotemplate' being one of the top three most read papers.
  • Our paper entitled 'Freestanding Metallic 1T MoS2 with Dual Ion Diffusion Paths as High Rate Anode for Sodium-ion Batteries' is highlighted in Advanced Functional Materials as front Cover.
  • Our paper entitled 'Ultralight, Highly Thermal Insulating and Fire Resistant Aerogel by Encapsulating Cellulose Nanofiber with Two-dimensional MoS2' is highlighted in Nanoscale as front Cover.
  • Congratulations for our work entitled 'Freestanding Metallic 1T MoS2 with Dual Ion Diffusion Paths as High Rate Anode for Sodium-ion Batteries' is accepted in Advanced Functional Materials. Read Now
  • Congratulations for Lei's work entitled 'Ultralight, Highly Thermal Insulating and Fire Resistant Aerogel by Encapsulating Cellulose Nanofiber with Two-dimensional MoS2' is accepted in Nanoscale. Read Now
  • Congratulations for Jingru, Xiahui and Lei's work entitled 'Free-Standing Porous N-doped Carbon Electrodes Derived from Wood for High-Performance Li-O2 Battery Applications' is accepted in Nano Research. Excellent work!
  • Dr. Zhu gave an invited talk at the department of Material Science and Engineering in Purdue University. Thanks Prof. Lia A Stanciu for the invitation.
  • Congratulations Alolika for her excellent performance in qualifying exam and to be PhD candidate. Good job!
  • Turn waste into energy! Check how we made ultrastable pseudocapacitor with earth-abundant material derived from trees.
  • Our paper entitled "Two-Dimensional Water-Coupled Metallic MoS2 with Nanochannels for Ultrafast Supercapacitors" has been reported in Nanotech. Read Now
  • Our paper entitled "Two-Dimensional Water-Coupled Metallic MoS2 with Nanochannels for Ultrafast Supercapacitors" has been published in Nano Letters. Read Now
  • The laboratory renovation is finished. Our glove box is ready! Read more pictures of our new lab. (11/03/2016).
  • Our paper entitled 'Paper-based magnetoresistive strips' is published in 'Magnetics Technology International', 2017. Read Now.
  • The paper on transparent electrode and magnetic permalloy made from novel nanopaper is accepted in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.Read Now
  • Dr. Zhu was invited to give a talk in 2016 International Conference on Flexible and Printed Electronics, Yamagata, Japan, Sep. 6.
  • Dr. Zhu's review paper, entitled "Wood-Derived Materials for Green Electronics, Biological Devices, and Energy Applications", is accepted by Chemical Reviews. Read Now
  • Our Tier 1 on the research of metallic MoS2 is funded!
  • Prof. Zhu chaired sections and presented as invited speaker in Symposium I: Nanocellulose Materials and Beyond-Nanoscience, Structures, Devices and Nanomanufacturing in MRS 2015 Fall meeting.
  • The journals Nature and Nature Nanotechnology have highlighted Dr. Zhong and Dr. Zhu's work in ACS Nano, on developing Self-Powered Human Interactive Transparent Nanopaper Systems for the application in anti-theft and smart mapping. Please check out the full paper
  • Dr. Zhu’s work, entitled "Anomalous Scaling Law of Strength and Toughness of Cellulose Nanopaper" published in PNAS was featured in various media like C&EN, Nanowerk etc. Read Now
  • Our group website is now online!

Acknowledgement of Our Sponsors