Zhiting Tian

Zhiting Tian

Associate Professor
Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Upson Hall, Room 363
Eugene A. Leinroth Sesquicentennial Faculty Fellow


Dr. Zhiting Tian directs the ZT Research Group, specializing in both computational modeling and experimental characterization of energy transport. She joined the Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering on July 1, 2018, with the added title of Eugene A. Leinroth Sesquicentennial Faculty Fellow. Between 2014 and 2018, she was an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Virginia Tech.

Research Interests

Micro/nanoscale heat transfer; thermal energy conversion and storage; thermal management; multiscale thermal transport in organic, inorganic, and hybrid materials; quantum computing; and biomedical engineering.

Teaching Interests

Introduction to Mechanical Engineering, Thermodynamics, Heat Transfer, Nanoscale Energy Transport and Conversion, Future Energy Systems, Atomistic Modeling of Materials

Selected Publications

  • C. Li, H. Ma, T. Li, J. Dai, J. Rasel, A. Mattoni, A. Alatas, M. Thomas, Z. Rouse, S. Baker, J. Feser, D. Mitzi, Z.T. Tian, “Remarkably Weak Anisotropy in Thermal Conductivity of Two-Dimensional Hybrid Perovskite (C4H9NH3)2PbI4 Crystals”, Nano Letters 21(9), 3708–3714 (2021)
  • H. Ma, Z. Aamer, Z.T. Tian, “Ultrahigh Thermal Conductivity in Three-Dimensional Covalent Organic Framework”, Materials Today Physics 21,100536 (2021)
  • J. Dai, and Z.T. Tian, “Rigorous Formalism of Anharmonic Atomistic Green's Function for Three-dimensional Interfaces”, Physical Review B: Rapid Communications 101, 041301(R) (2020)
  • H. Ma, C. Li, Y. W. Ma, H. Wang, Z.W. Rouse, Z. Zhang, C. Slebodnick, A. Alatas, S.P. Baker, J.J. Urban, and Z.T. Tian, “Super Compliant and Soft (CH3NH3)3Bi2I9 Crystals with Ultralow Thermal Conductivity”, Physical Review Letters 123, 155901 (2019)
  • H. Ma and Z.T. Tian, “Significantly High Thermal Rectification in an Asymmetric Polymer Molecule Driven by Diffusive versus Ballistic Transport”, Nano Letters 18, 43-48 (2018)

Selected Awards and Honors

  • DARPA Young Faculty Award 2023
  • DOD DURIP Award 2022
  • Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) Young Investigator Award, 2021
  • NASA Early Stage Innovations Award, 2021
  • Fellow of ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers), 2019
  • PMSE Young Investigator, 2019
  • MIT Technology Review 35 Innovators under 35 China, 2019
  • 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
  • College of Engineering Undergraduate Research Advisor Award, Virginia Tech, 2016


  • B.E. Engineering Physics, Tsinghua University, China 2007
  • M.S. Mechanical Engineering, Binghamton University 2009
  • Ph.D. Mechanical Engineering, MIT 2014