Bio

B.Sc. in Chemistry University of Science and Technology of China, 2009Ph.D. in Chemistry Brown University, 2014

"The Zhu Group's research aims to develop new synthetic strategies for well-defined nanocrystals and 2-dimensional (2D) materials with atomically precise surfaces and interfaces that can lead to a fundamental understanding of how atomic structure affects catalyst performance and to use this new knowledge to design optimized catalysts for critical energy conversion and chemical transformation processes."

The Zhu Group's research aims to develop new synthetic strategies for well-defined nanocrystals and 2-dimensional (2D) materials with atomically precise surfaces and interfaces that can lead to a fundamental understanding of how atomic structure affects catalyst performance and to use this new knowledge to design optimized catalysts for critical energy conversion and chemical transformation processes.Research will focus specifically on:

  • Electrochemical CO2 conversion

  • Sustainable nitrogen cycling

  • Heterogeneous thermocatalytic reactions (e.g., acetylene semi-hydrogenation).

Three questions fundamental to catalysis are to be addressed:

  1. What are the catalytic active sites and how do they evolve under reaction conditions?

  2. How to steer the reaction pathway toward desirable products via modulating active sites and their environments?

  3. How to circumvent or ultimately, go beyond adsorption-energy scaling relations? 

Research Interests

  • Catalysis

Selected Publications

  • Breaking adsorption-energy scaling limitations of electrocatalytic nitrate reduction on intermetallic CuPd nanocubes by machine-learned insights Qiang Gao, Hemanth Somarajan Pillai, Yang Huang, Shikai Liu, Qingmin Mu, Xue Han, Zihao Yan, Hua Zhou, Qian He, Hongliang Xin, Huiyuan Zhu
  • Heterostructured Bi–Cu 2 S nanocrystals for efficient CO 2 electroreduction to formate Xue Han, Tianyou Mou, Shikai Liu, Mengxia Ji, Qiang Gao, Qian He, Hongliang Xin, Huiyuan Zhu