Lab Manager



1000 E.  University Ave. Dep. 4311
Laramie, WY 82071




Ph.D., Inorganic Chemistry/Materials Science, University of Notre Dame

Thesis: “Size-Dependent Structures and Properties of Metallic Particles and Thin Films.”


Skills and Expertise:

  • Extensive experience on TEM imaging: bright/dark-field imaging of particles, HRTEM, HAADF-STEM, single-particle EDS, and EFTEM mapping techniques. TEM: FEI Tecnai G(2) F30 S-Twin (300kV) FEI Tecnai at Sandia, FEI Tecnai G2 20 Twin (200 kV) at Duke, and JEOL JEM 2100 at EPA Cincinnati lab and Harvard CNS.
  • Used SEM to characterize porous ceramic pellets and used EDS to determine whether ceramic materials were formed all through the whole cross-section of pellet (SEM: Zeiss Sigma Field Emission with Oxford EDS). The pellets were also tested to determine their failure pressures and whether they meet mechanical requirements.
  • Familiar with FEI Helios 660 FIB for TEM sample preparation, and aberration-corrected TEMs (e.g., FEI Titan and JEOL ARM 200F).
  • Other instruments were also used to analyze/characterize materials, such as XPS, XRD, AFM, FTIR, Raman, fluorescence, UV-vis, DLS, BET, confocal, etc.


Work Experience:

Research Fellow, Harvard University, 2016-2020

  • Characterized novel nanoparticles as reference materials for nanosafety studies; characterization tools: TEM, SEM, EDS, XPS, XRD, AFM, FTIR, Raman, DLS, BET, etc.
  • Participated in method development for nanosafety research to understand the structure-activity relationships for nano-bio interactions.

Materials Scientist, Pegasus Technical Services, Inc., On-Site Contractor to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2013-2016

  • Investigated the sulfidation process of nanomaterials with different shapes (spherical particles vs. wires) and studying the corresponding morphology change of these materials. TEM: JEOL JEM 2100 at EPA Cincinnati lab.
  • Determined the quantity of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in environmental samples and studying their structures under TEM and SEM
  • Evaluated transport and fate of commercial nanomaterials in environment and characterizing their morphology change
  • Utilized XPS to characterize surface bonding of nanomaterials and soil samples and used CASA software to perform curve fitting. XPS: PHI Quantera II Scanning XPS Microprobe

Researcher, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, 2013-2013

  • Synthesized (via hydrothermal liquid phase sintering) and characterized bioactive ceramic materials for bone substitute.
  • Studied properties of cement and mortars for green building materials.

Research & Development Scientist, Ivoclar Vivadent Manufacturing, Inc., 2011-2012

  • Initiated and developed colloidal processing of ceramics for dental application. Nanozirconia slurry was wet-processed by stabilizing with different dispersants, slip cast, and sintered at 1,100 °C with high body density.

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Duke University, 2009-2011

  • Synthesized and characterized core-shell upconversion nanocrystals (e.g., rare earth doped Y2O3 or NaYF4 nanoparticles coated with Au or Ag shell). Obtained high-quality HRTEM images of nanoparticle lattice fringes with TEM (FEI Tecnai G2 20 Twin (200 kV)).



Yaokai Duan, Roxana Coreas, Yang Liu, Dimitrios Bitounis, Zhenyuan Zhang, Dorsa Parviz, Michael Strano, Philip Demokritou, Wenwan Zhong, “Prediction of protein corona on nanomaterials by machine learning using novel descriptors”, NanoImpact, 17 (2020)

Soohyun Kim, Brooke L. Gates, Brian C. Leonard, Megan M. Gragg, Kent E. Pinkerton, Laura S. Van Winkle, Christopher J. Murphy, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Zhenyuan Zhang, Philip Demokritou, Sara M. Thomasy, “Engineered metal oxide nanomaterials inhibit corneal epithelial wound healing in vitro and in vivo”, NanoImpact17 (2020)

Akira Tsuda, Thomas C. Donaghey, Nagarjun V. Konduru, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Laura S. Van Winkle, Zhenyuan Zhang, Patricia Edwards, Jessica-Miranda Bustamante, Joseph D. Brain, Phillip Demokritou, “Age-Dependent Translocation of Gold Nanoparticles across the Air−Blood Barrier”, ACS Nano13, 10095 (2019)

Xiaoqiong Cao, Glen M. DeLoid, Dimitrios Bitounis, Roberto De La Torre-Roche, Jason C. White, Zhenyuan Zhang, Chin Guan Ho, Kee Woei Ng, Brian D. Eitzer, Philip Demokritou, “Co-exposure to the food additives SiO2 (E551) or TiO2 (E171) and the pesticide boscalid increases cytotoxicity and bioavailability of the pesticide in a tri-culture small intestinal epithelium model: potential health implications”, Sci.: Nano, 6, 2786-2800 (2019)

Maryam Salari, Dimitrios Bitounis, Kunal Bhattacharya, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Zhenyuan Zhang, Emilia Purington, William Gramlich, Yohann Grondin, Rick Rogers, Douglas Bousfield, Philip Demokritou, “Development & Characterization of Fluorescently Tagged Nanocellulose for Nanotoxicological Studies”, Sci.: Nano, 6, 1516 (2019)

Ju Yong Lee, Hua Wang, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Glen M. DeLoid, Zhenyuan Zhang, Juan Beltran-Huarac, Philip Demokritou, Wenwan Zhong, “Analysis of Lipid Adsorption on Nanoparticles by Nanoflow Liquid Chromatography-tandem Mass Spectrometry”, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 410, 6155 (2018)

Seungkuk Ahn, Herdeline Ann M. Ardoña, Johan U. Lind, Feyisayo Eweje, Sean L. Kim, Grant M. Gonzalez, Qihan Liu, John F. Zimmerman, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Zhenyuan Zhang, Juan Beltran-Huarac, Paul Carpinone, Brij M. Moudgil, Philip Demokritou, Kevin Kit Parker, “Mussel-inspired 3D Fiber Scaffolds for Heart-on-a-Chip Toxicity Studies of Engineered Nanomaterials”, Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 410, 6141 (featured on the cover of issue 24) (2018)

Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Wing Luu, Zhenyuan Zhang, Nachiket Vaze, Glen DeLoid, Laura Rubio, Adam C. Graham, David C. Bell, Douglas Bousfield, Philip Demokritou, “Development of High Throughput, High Precision Synthesis Platforms and Characterization Methodologies for Toxicological Studies of Nanocellulose”, Cellulose, 25, 2303 (2018)

Juan Beltran-Huarac, Zhenyuan Zhang, Georgios Pyrgiotakis, Glen DeLoid, Nachiket Vaze, Philip Demokritou, “Development of Reference Metal and Metal Oxide Engineered Nanomaterials for Nanotoxicology Research Using High Throughput and Precision Flame Spray Synthesis Approaches”, NanoImpact, 10, 26 (2018)

Matthew J. Meagher, Bridget Leone, Travis L. Tumbull, Ryan D. Ross, Zhenyuan Zhang, Ryan K. Roeder, “Dextran-encapsulated Barium Sulfate Nanoparticles Prepared for Aqueous Dispersion as an X-ray Contrast Agent”, Nanoparticle Res. 15, 2146 (2013)

Zhenyuan Zhang, Tina M. Nenoff, Kevin Leung, Summer R. Ferreira, Jianyu Huang, Donald T. Berry, Paula P. Provencio, Roland Stumpf, “Room Temperature Synthesis of Ag-Ni and Pd-Ni Alloy Nanoparticles”, Phys. Chem. C, 114, 14309 (2010)

Zhenyuan Zhang, Ryan D. Ross, Ryan K. Roeder, “Preparation of Functionalized Gold Nanoparticles as a Targeted X-ray Contrast Agent for Damaged Bone Tissue”, Nanoscale, 2010, 2, 582 (cited 40 times); Featured in Highlights in Chemical Science, 7, 3 (Royal Society of Chemistry, U.K.) (2010)

Zhenyuan Zhang, Tina M. Nenoff, Jianyu Huang, Donald T. Berry, Paula P. Provencio, “Room Temperature Synthesis of Thermally Immiscible Ag-Ni Nanoalloys”, Phys. Chem. C113, 1155 (2009)

Zhenyuan Zhang, Dan Meisel, Prashant Kamat, Masaru Kuno, “Layer-by-layer Self-Assembly of Colloidal Gold-Silica Multilayers” Educ. 13, 153 (2008)

Hristina Petrova, Jorge Perez-Juste, Zhenyuan Zhang, Jing Zhang, Tom Kosel, Gregory V. Hartland, “Crystal Structure Dependence of the Elastic Constants of Au Nanorods” Mater. Chem., 16, 3957 (2006)

Carolina Novo, Daniel Gomez, Jorge Perez-Juste, Zhenyuan Zhang, Hristina Petrova, Maximilian Reismann, Paul Mulvaney, Gregory V. Hartland, “Contributions from Radiation Damping and Surface Scattering to the Linewidth of the Longitudinal Plasmon Band of Gold Nanorods: A Single Particle Study” Chem. Chem. Phys., 8, 3540 (2006)

Xuan Wang, Zhenyuan Zhang, Gregory V. Hartland, “Electronic Dephasing in Bimetallic Gold-Silver Nanoparticles Examined by Single Particle Spectroscopy” Phys. Chem. B, 109, 20324 (2005)

Debdutta Lahiri, Bruce A. Bunker, Bhoopesh Mishra, Zhenyuan Zhang, Dan Meisel, C. M. Doudna, M. F. Bertino, Frank D. Blum, A. T. Tokuhiro, Soma Chattopadhyay, Tomohiro Shibata, Jeffrey Terry, “Bimetallic Pt-Ag and Pd-Ag Nanoparticles”, Appl. Phys., 97, 094304 (2005)

Zhenyuan Zhang, Alexander Berg, Haim Levanon, Richard W. Fessenden, Dan Meisel, “On the Interactions of Free Radicals with Gold Nanoparticles”, Am. Chem. Soc., 125, 7959 (2003)

Tomohiro Shibata, Bruce A. Bunker, Zhenyuan Zhang, Dan Meisel, Charles F. Vardeman, Daniel Gezelter, “Size-Dependent Spontaneous Alloying of Au-Ag Nanoparticles”, Am. Chem. Soc., 11989 (2002)

Kimberly Dick, T. Dhanasekaran, Zhenyuan Zhang, Dan Meisel, “Size-Dependent Melting of Silica-Encapsulated Gold Nanoparticles”, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 124, 2312 (2002)