Two WSU faculty named National Academy of Inventors senior members

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Engineering professors Xianming Shi and Jinwen Zhang have been honored as senior members of the National Academy of Inventors.

The Academy recognizes senior members for their success in patents, licensing, and commercialization as well as for having produced technology that has, or will have, a significant impact on society. They will both be inducted formally at the Academy’s annual meeting in June in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Closeup of Xianming Shi
Xianming Shi

Shi, chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, directs the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Center for Transportation Infrastructure Durability & Life-Extension. The center is the only national university transportation center focused on the state of infrastructure repair, and the consortium includes researchers from 11 universities around the U.S.

Shi’s research has resulted in mechanistic understanding of how nanoscience and nanoengineering can benefit infrastructure durability, and he has received about $27 million in research funding from a variety of sources, including the National Science Foundation, National Academies, USDA, USDOE, USDOT, state departments of transportation (DOTs), Washington State Department of Ecology, Washington State Department of Commerce, and the private sector. He holds patents or has filed patent applications for biologically-derived deicers, cement compositions made from waste fly ash, carbon-neutral and carbon-negative cement composites, and nano-modified sealers for concrete. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers. 

Shi holds a PhD in polymer chemistry from the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing as well as a master’s degree in industrial and management engineering from Montana State University. He also holds a master’s degree from Tianjin University and a bachelor’s degree from Beijing Institute of Chemical Technology in China.

Closeup of Jinwen Zhang
Jinwen Zhang

Zhang, professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering and with the Composite Materials and Engineering Center, has been advancing in the field of polymer sustainability through focused research efforts, particularly in development of biobased polymers, design for recyclability, and innovative approaches to plastic waste recycling. He has projects related to biobased recyclable polyurethane foams and non-isocyanate polyurethanes, biobased self-reparable powder coating resins, and upcycling of carbon-fiber reinforced thermoset waste.

He has received funding support from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Energy, the United Soybean Board, NSF I/U CRC Center for bioplastics and Biocomposites, the Joint Center for Aerospace Technology Innovation, and industry partners.

Zhang holds an undergraduate degree in dyeing and finishing from the Suzhou Institute of Silk Textile Technology in China, a master’s degree in the technology of fine chemicals from Dalian University of Technology, and a PhD in polymer science from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.

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