The Michigan Engineer News Center

Prof. Zhengya Zhang receives CoE undergraduate education award

Prof. Zhang receives outstanding evaluations from students and opens their imagination to research in the field of VLSI circuits and systems.| Short Read
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IMAGE:  Zhengya Zhang

Zhengya Zhang, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science, received the 2019 College of Engineering Neil Van Eenam Memorial Undergraduate Teaching Award for his outstanding contributions to the education of undergraduate students.

Since coming to Michigan in 2009, Zhang has dedicated himself to the education of his students, while maintaining an active research program. He is known for his collegiality among his colleagues and his overall excellence as an educator.

His office hours were held in small classrooms which encouraged a regular attendance of 10-20 students who would stay to hear others’ questions. Even while teaching difficult entry-level courses, he receives unusually high evaluations from his students.

Many undergraduate students are thrilled at the opportunity to be part of a research setting, but opportunities for this are rare. Zhang has taken the time to host more than 30 undergraduate students in his research group. Most of these students pursued graduate studies.

Zhang currently chairs the Computer Engineering program committee, is an advisor to electrical engineering and computer engineering students, and serves on a variety of committees dedicated to undergraduate education.

His research is in the area of low-power and high-performance VLSI circuits and systems for computing, communications and signal processing to leverage emerging nanodevices, architectures, and advanced signal processing algorithms.

Zhengya Zhang
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The electrons absorb laser light and set up “momentum combs” (the hills) spanning the energy valleys within the material (the red line). When the electrons have an energy allowed by the quantum mechanical structure of the material—and also touch the edge of the valley—they emit light. This is why some teeth of the combs are bright and some are dark. By measuring the emitted light and precisely locating its source, the research mapped out the energy valleys in a 2D crystal of tungsten diselenide. Credit: Markus Borsch, Quantum Science Theory Lab, University of Michigan.

Mapping quantum structures with light to unlock their capabilities

Rather than installing new “2D” semiconductors in devices to see what they can do, this new method puts them through their paces with lasers and light detectors. | Medium Read