Zhongfu Zhou

Research Professor

Contact Details

Room Number..........:  3.21
Building....................:  Physical Sciences
Phone.......................:   +44 (0)1970 621907
E-Mail........................:   zzz


Zhongfu is a graduate of the University of Science & Technology Beijing, China (B.Sc. in Physical Chemistry of Metallurgy and Materials (Rare-Earth Engineering), 1992; Ph.D in Physical Chemistry of Metallurgy and Materials, 1998). He obtained his D.Phil. in Materials Science from the University of Oxford in 2005. Before moving to the UK, Zhongfu worked as a lecturer at the university he graduated from, and technology director and production manager in a company in China for short periods. In 2002, he started his D.Phil. study in Oxford. After finishing his D.Phil. study in Oxford in 2005, Zhongfu joined Prof. Kenneth Harris’ research group at the School of Chemistry, Cardiff University as a research associate, and then he was appointed as a permanent research fellow in Cardiff University since 2008. Zhongfu moved to Aberystwyth in 2010 to work for IMAPS and CAFMaD. He is also a visiting fellow to the Department of Materials, University of Oxford since 2006, and is a distinguished professor of Shanghai University, China since 2011.

Research Interests

  • My Areas of Research are:
    • Design, simulation and fabrication of new glassy materials: In collaboration with Prof. Neville Greaves in developing new types of glass materials with unusual properties and functionalities with the aid of large scale computer simulation and advanced visualization techniques.
    • Characterization and simulation of nanodefects: Research in this field involves developing characterization techniques of combining experimental observation using electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction/scattering and computer simulations to tackle the difficulties of characterizing defects and inclusions in materials.
    • Structure determination of crystals using X-Ray diffraction: This was my main research field in Cardiff University. My research has been extensively involved in optimization and further development of methodological aspects of the direct-space strategy for structure solution from powder X-ray diffraction data using genetic algorithm.
    • Materials design: I have interests in designing materials based on the fundamental aspects of “crystal engineering” and “defect engineering”. Molecular mechanics (MM), molecular dynamics(MD) and DFT calculations are commonly used in the design strategy. Working on this field is also focused on further development of the molecular quasicrystals first introduced in 2006.
    • Developing of materials simulations packages/software: TEMACI for TEM imaging of defects, DynaDS for electron diffuse scattering from defects and impurities, EAGER for structure solution of crystals from powder X-Ray diffraction data, as well as materials visualization tools for “visualizing” the microstructures and dynamics of materials.



Chen, H., Zhou, Z., Greaves, G.N., Nigar, S., Cao, H., Zhao, T., Lu, X. 2018. Pt nanoparticles decorated rose-like Bi2O2CO3 configurations for efficient photocatalytic removal of water organic pollutants. RSC Advances 8 pp. 914-920. 10.1039/c7ra12236e


Le Losq, C., Neuville, D.R., Chen, W., Florian, P., Massiot, D., Zhou, Z., Greaves, G. 2017. Percolation channels: a universal idea to describe the atomic structure and dynamics of glasses and melts. Scientific Reports 7 16490 10.1038/s41598-017-16741-3

Nigar, S., Zhou, Z., Wang, H., Imtiaz, M. 2017. Modulating the electronic and magnetic properties of graphene. RSC Advances 7 pp. 51546-51580. 10.1039/C7RA08917A

Zhao, T., Jin, W., Ji, X., Jiang, Y., Dong, Y., Yang, Y., Dang, A., Li, H., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. Synthesis of sandwich microstructured expanded graphite/barium ferrite connected with carbon nanotube composite and its electromagnetic wave absorbing properties. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 712 pp. 59-68. 10.1016/j.jallcom.2017.04.070 Cadair

Zhao, T., Ji, X., Jin, W., Xiong, C., Ma, W., Duan, S., Dang, A., Li, H., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. Synthesis and electromagnetic wave absorption property of amorphous carbon nanotube networks on a 3D graphene aerogel/BaFe12O19 nanocomposite. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 708 pp. 115-122. 10.1016/j.jallcom.2017.03.001 Cadair

Zhao, T., She, S., Ji, X., Jin, W., Dang, A., Li, H., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. In-situ growth amorphous carbon nanotube on silicon particles as lithium-ion battery anode materials. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 708 pp. 500-507. 10.1016/j.jallcom.2017.03.019 Cadair

Xie, X., Zou, X., Lu, X., Xu, Q., Lu, C., Chen, C., Zhou, Z. 2017. Electrodeposition behaviour and characterization of copper-zinc alloy in deep eutectic solvent. Journal of Applied Electrochemistry 47 (6) pp. 679-689. 10.1007/s10800-017-1069-y Cadair

Zhao, T., Ji, X., Jin, W., Guo, S., Zhao, H., Yang, W., Wang, Z., Xiong, C., Dang, A., Li, H., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. Electromagnetic wave absorbing properties of aligned amorphous carbon nanotube/BaFe12O19 nanorod composite. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 703 pp. 424-430. 10.1016/j.jallcom.2017.02.014 Cadair

Zhang, X., Zhou, Z., Ning, J., Nigar, S., Zhao, T., Lu, X., Cao, H. 2017. 3D dendritic-Fe2O3@C nanoparticles as an anode material for lithium ion batteries. RSC Advances 7 pp. 18508-18511. 10.1039/C7RA01260H Cadair

Zhao, T., Ji, X., Bi, P., Jin, W., Xiong, C., Dang, A., Li, H., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. In situ synthesis of interlinked three-dimensional graphene foam/polyaniline nanorod supercapacitor. Electrochimica Acta 230 pp. 342-349. 10.1016/j.electacta.2017.02.021 Cadair

Zhao, T., Ji, X., Jin, W., Wang, C., Ma, W., Gao, J., Dang, A., Li, T., Shang, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. Direct in situ synthesis of a 3D interlinked amorphous carbon nanotube/graphene/BaFe12O19 composite and its electromagnetic wave absorbing properties. RSC Advances pp. 15903-15910. 10.1039/c7ra00623c Cadair

Zou, X., Li, S., Lu, X., Xu, Q., Chen, C., Guo, S., Zhou, Z. 2017. Direct Extraction of Titanium Alloys/Composites from Titanium Compounds Ores in Molten CaCI<sub>2</sub>. Materials Transactions 58 (3) MK201603 pp. 331-340. 10.2320/matertrans.MK201603 Cadair


Feng, C., Hu, D., Gong, K., Jiang, X., Yin, J., Cao, Y., Tang, X., Yang, F., Zhou, Z., Yu, G., Evans, D. 2016. Thickness-dependent electronic structure modulation of ferromagnetic films on shape memory alloy substrates based on a pure strain effect. Applied Physics Letters 109 (21) 212401 10.1063/1.4967996 Cadair

Xie, X., Zou, X., Lu, X., Lu, C., Cheng, H., Xu, Q., Zhou, Z. 2016. Electrodeposition of Zn and Cu−Zn alloy from ZnO/CuO precursors in deep eutectic solvent. Applied Surface Science 385 pp. 481-489. 10.1016/j.apsusc.2016.05.138 Cadair

Yi, X., Jenkins, M.L., Kirk, M.A., Zhou, Z., Robers, S.G. 2016. In-situ TEM studies of 150 keV W+ ion irradiated W and W-alloys: Damage production and microstructural evolution. Acta Materialia 112 pp. 105-120. 10.1016/j.actamat.2016.03.051 Cadair

Liu, Y., Zhang, J., Zhang, X., Li, B., Wang, X., Cao, H., Wei, D., Zhou, Z., Cheetham, A.K. 2016. Magnetic catalysts as nanoactuators to achieve simultaneous momentum-transfer and continuous-flow hydrogen production. Journal of Materials Chemistry A 4 (11) pp. 4280-4287. 10.1039/C5TA10697D Cadair


Cheng, H., Luo, L., Yao, W., Lu, X., Zou, X., Zhou, Z. 2015. Novel cobalt-free CO2-tolerant dual-phase membranes of Ce0.8Sm0.2O2−δ –Ba0.95La0.05Fe1−xZrxO3−δ for oxygen separation. Journal of Membrane Science 492 pp. 220-229. 10.1016/j.memsci.2015.05.057 Other Cadair

Bennett, T.D., Tan, J., Yue, Y., Baxter, E., Ducati, C., Terrill, N.J., Yeung, H.H.-., Zhou, Z., Chen, W., Henke, S., Cheetham, A.K., Greaves, G.N. 2015. Hybrid glasses from strong and fragile metal-organic framework liquids. Nature Communications 6 8079 10.1038/ncomms9079 Cadair

Wang, J., Chen, J., Zhou, Z. 2015. Preparation of Porous Silicon by Sodiothermic Reduction of Zeolite and Photoactivation for Benzene Oxidation. European Journal of Inorganic Chemistry 2015 (8) pp. 1330-1333. 10.1002/ejic.201403033 Cadair


Tao, W., Cheng, H., Yao, W., Lu, X., Zhu, Q., Li, G., Zhou, Z. 2014. Syngas production by CO2 reforming of coke oven gas over Ni/La2O3–ZrO2 catalysts. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 39 32 pp. 18650-18658. 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2014.02.029 Cadair

Cheng, H., Feng, S., Tao, W., Lu, X., Yao, W., Li, G., Zhou, Z. 2014. Effects of noble metal-doping on Ni/La2O3–ZrO2 catalysts for dry reforming of coke oven gas. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 39 (24) pp. 12604-12612. 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2014.06.120 Cadair


Zhang, F., Cao, H., Yue, D., Zhou, Z. 2013. Graphene Covalently Modified by DNA G-Base. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 117 (7) pp. 3513-3519. 10.1021/jp307298p Cadair

Yin, J., Cao, H., Zhang, J., Qu, M., Zhou, Z. 2013. Synthesis and Applications of gamma-Tungsten Oxide Hierarchical Nanostructures. Crystal Growth and Design 13 (2) pp. 759-769. 10.1021/cg301469u Cadair

Li, L., Fu, Y., Guo, F., Gao, J., Tong, J., Zhou, Z. 2013. Polymorphism and photoluminescence in a naphthalene-based ligand, and its supramolecular structures through second-sphere coordination with the [CoCl4]2− anion. RSC Advances 3 (29) pp. 11594-11600. 10.1039/c3ra22748k Cadair


Yin, J., Cao, H., Zhou, Z., Zhang, J., Qu, M. 2012. SnS2@reduced graphene oxide nanocomposites as anode materials with high capacity for rechargeable lithium ion batteries. Journal of Materials Chemistry 22 (45) pp. 23963-23970. 10.1039/c2jm35137d Cadair

Zou, X., Lu, X., Zhou, Z., Li, C. 2012. Direct electrosynthesis of Ti5Si3/TiC composites from their oxides/C precursors in molten calcium chloride. Electrochemistry Communications 21 pp. 9-13. 10.1016/j.elecom.2012.05.008 Cadair

Lu, X., Zou, X., Li, C., Zhong, Q., Ding, W., Zhou, Z. 2012. Green Electrochemical Process Solid-Oxide Oxygen-Ion-Conducting Membrane (SOM): Direct Extraction of Ti-Fe Alloys from Natural Ilmenite. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B 43 (3) pp. 503-512. 10.1007/s11663-012-9633-7 Cadair

Zou, X., Lu, X., Zhou, Z., Li, C., Ding, W. 2012. Environmentally Friendly Electrochemical Method for the Direct Extraction of Titanium from High-titanium Slag. In Q. J. Xu., H. H. Ge., J. X. Zhang. (eds) NATURAL RESOURCES AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, PTS 1-3. Advanced Materials Research, vol. 361-363 International Conference on Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development (ICEESD 2011). Trans Tech Publications, STAFA-ZURICH pp. 655-659. 10.4028/www.scientific.net/AMR.361-363.655 Cadair


Flikkema, E., Zhou, Z., Greaves, N. 2011. Using visualisation techniques and Molecular Dynamics to study atoms diffusing in glass. Eurographics 2011 proceedings. Eurographics 2011. Eurographics pp. 47-48. Cadair

Zou, X., Lu, X., Zhou, Z., Li, C., Ding, W. 2011. Direct selective extraction of titanium silicide Ti5Si3 from multi-component Ti-bearing compounds in molten salt by an electrochemical process. Electrochimica Acta 56 (24) pp. 8430-8437. 10.1016/j.electacta.2011.07.026 Cadair

Flikkema, E., Greaves, N., Zhou, Z. 2011. Molecular Dynamics Study of Ion Diffusion in Glassy Materials. International Conference on Materials for Advanced Technologies 2011. Cadair


Lim, G.K., Zhou, Z., Fujii, K., Calcagno, P., Tedesco, E., Kitchin, S.J., Kariuki, B.M., Philp, D., Harris, K.D.M. 2010. Arrays of P=O Dipoles As a Recurrent Structural Motif in Bis-Diphenylphosphine Oxides, Established from Powder X-ray Diffraction. Crystal Growth and Design 10 (8) pp. 3814-3818. 10.1021/cg100715v Cadair

Zou, X., Lu, X., Li, C., Zhou, Z. 2010. A direct electrochemical route from oxides to Ti-Si intermetallics. Electrochimica Acta 55 (18) pp. 5173-5179. 10.1016/j.electacta.2010.04.032 Cadair

Cosgriff, E.C., Nellist, P.D., Hirsch, P.B., Zhou, Z., Cockayne, D.J.H. 2010. ADF STEM imaging of screw dislocations viewed end-on. Philosophical Magazine 90 (33) PII 926348991 pp. 4361-4375. 10.1080/14786435.2010.505183 Cadair


Zhou, Z., Harris, K.D.M. 2009. Multiple-fragment representations of molecular geometry in direct-space structure solution from powder X-ray diffraction data using genetic algorithms. Computational Materials Science 45 (1) E-MRS 2007 Fall Meeting Symposium on Genetic Algorithms in Materials Science and Engineering. pp. 118-121. 10.1016/j.commatsci.2008.03.047 Cadair


Zhou, Z., Harris, K.D.M. 2008. Counteracting stagnation in genetic algorithm calculations by implementation of a micro genetic algorithm strategy. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 10 (48) pp. 7262-7269. 10.1039/b807326k Cadair

Zhou, Z., Harris, K.D.M. 2008. Optimizing the Number of Components in a Molecular Quasicrystal: A Three-Component Material Based on the Penrose Tiling. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 112 (42) pp. 16186-16188. 10.1021/jp807372j Cadair

Zhou, Z., Harris, K.D.M. 2008. Residue-based charge flipping: A new variant of an emerging algorithm for structure solution from X-ray diffraction data. Journal of Physical Chemistry A 112 (22) pp. 4863-4868. 10.1021/jp801185u Cadair