Picture of Dr. Ning Zhang

Assistant Professor

Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics

1003 NERC
 (205) 348-7237
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  • Ph.D., Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Florida, 2013
  • M.S., Solid Mechanics, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China, 2008
  • B.S., Engineering Mechanics, Dalian University of Technology, China, 2006


Predicting and controlling the structure-property-processing relations in materials play important roles in designing advanced materials. With the recent progress in computing power, computational modeling has become very popular in studying these relations, which also enables design of new generation of materials in a faster pace.

Dr. Ning Zhang’s research interests include developing multiscale computational frameworks to predict nano- and microstructures and properties toward design advanced and multifunctional materials. She is particularly interested in studying dislocation migration, phase transformation, organic-inorganic interface interaction, and developing interatomic potentials for different materials. Her research involves biomaterials, shape memory ceramics/alloys, high entropy alloys, 2D materials, and hypersonic flight materials.

Her main research goal is to explore mechanics strategies for designing high performance, multifunctional, adaptive and “green” composite materials through multiscale computational approaches.

Honors and Awards

  • NSF travel grant for junior faculty and postdoc fellows attending the EMI conference, 2018
  • Outstanding Academy Achievement Award, University of Florida, 2013
  • NSF Student Travel Grants for attending the ASME IMECE 2011 Micro/Nano Poster Forum, 2011
  • FMD Young Leaders Professional Development Award, The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society, 2019
  • SMD Young Professional Poster Winner, The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society, 2019

Areas of Research

Latest Publications

  • Ning Zhang and Mohsen Asle Zaeem. Nanoscale Self-healing Mechanisms in Shape Memory Ceramics. npj Computational Materials, 2019, 5 (1), p. 54.
  • Ning Zhang and Mohsen Asle Zaeem. Understanding Specimen- and Grain-Size Effects on Nanoscale Plastic Deformation Mechanisms and Mechanical Properties of Polycrystalline Yttria-Stabilized Tetragonal Zirconia Nanopillars. European Journal of Mechanics/ A Solids. 76 (2019): 80-90.
  • Ning Zhang, Yu Hong, Youping Chen. Dynamic Crack Propagation Behaviors of Calcium Carbonate: Aragonite, Journal of Materials Science, 54(4) (2019): 2779-2786.
  • Ning Zhang, Yu Hong, Sanaz Yazdanparast, Mohsen Asle Zaeem. Superior Structural, Elastic and Electronic Properties of 2D Titanium Nitride MXenes over Carbide based MXenes: A Comprehensive First Principles Study, 2D Materials 5 (2018) 045004.
  • Ning Zhang, Philippe Carrez, Rouzbeh Sharsavari, Screw Dislocation-Induced Strengthening-Toughening Mechanisms in Complex, Layered Materials: The Case Study of Tobermorite. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 2 (2017): 1496-1506.