Deparment of
Materials Science & Engineering


The Zang Research Group   


Prof. Ling Zang

USTAR Office: Rm5543 SMBB building,
Tel. 801-587-1551

Department Office: Rm209 CME building,
Tel. 801-585-0966

Fax: 801-585-0625

Mailing Address:
SMBB Building, Room 5543
36 South Wasatch Dr., Salt Lake City, UT 84112


Group News

July 5, 2023, Dr. Zang is highlighted by the University of Utah PIVOT Center for his tech-transfer effort. PIVOT drives technology commercialization, corporate engagement and economic development

June 6, 2023, Dr. Zang was elected to the 2023 Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Jan. 27, 2022, Dr. Zang was elected to the 2021 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).;; ; 校 友臧泠当选 2021美国科学促进会会士(AAAS Fellow)

May 20, 2021, Dr. Zang was elected to the board of directors of Gentex (NASDAQ: GNTX), 

Jan. 12, 2021, it is time again for CES ! but not in Vegas this year, everything is virtual online. Glad to see our nanofiber sensor technologies developed here at the U have now been commercialized by Vaporsens, a Gentex company, to serve broader customers.

Dec. 8, 2020, Dr. Zang was elected to the 2020 Fellow of National Academy of Inventors (NAI). see NAI press release,; University of Utah report, 化 学系校友臧泠入选美国国家发明家科学院院士. 3位清华校友当选美国国家发明家科学院 院士   

Nov. 8, 2018, The nanofiber photo-chemiresistive sensor technology ( ) has now been develoepd by Vaporsens into a new platform that can potentialy be used for non-distructive, remote detection of fentanyl, an opioid drug causing national wide problems with economic cost over $500B annually. see the report by KUTV, CBS2 channel:

May 24, 2018, Our nanofiber sensor technology has now been develoepd by Vaporsens into a new direction of applicaiton, Wearable Fentanyl Sensor, which can potentially used for alerting DHS and first responder personnel to the presence of harmful levels of fentanyl. 

May 23, 2018, KUTV, CBS2 channel, reported our recent technology development in nanofiber sensors and application in real-time monitoring of air pollutions.

May 21, 2018, Vaporsens and the Utah Department of Environmental Quality received a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to develop real time monitoring of air toxins in Utah.

September 19, 2017, Vaporsens is honored to be awarded a Phase I SBIR research grant from the Environmental Protection Agency, to continue the development of our nanofiber chemical sensors for monitoring formaldehyde in indoor environments.

June 13, 2017, Our nanofiber sensor technology and Vaporsens was selected as finalist in Smart Cities Connect Innovation Challenge, an event taking place in Austin, TX, June 26-27, 2017.

March 20, 2017, Vaporsens was honored as a "top 40 University Start-Up" by the National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer. Being selected as one of the top 40 from 200 candidate startup companies is really a great honor with strong competition. There are over 800 university startups launched every year; as one of the thousands startup companies, Vaporsens strives to excel and promote UUs high reputation in leading tech-transfer and commercialization.Vaporsens was honored to be selected as
                    one of the top 40 University Start-Ups

Dec. 20, 2016,  Vaporsens was invited and sponsored for Tech Demo at CES 2017 Eureka Park by NSF,

Aug. 3, 2016, A unique method was developed to fabricate large crystal MAPbI3 perovskite film, and the work is now published in Chem. Commun.  Also available online is a video clip showing the reverse temperature induced crystallization process:

as prepared dark brown film --> colorless liquid under amine vapor --> crystallization into clear light brown film under elevated temperature,  

April 4, 2016, Nanofiber nose: our D-A nanofiber composite sensors for alkane detection was higlhighted in ChemistryViews

Mar. 27, 2016, Fuel sensor work featured at ABC4 TV,

Mar. 25, 2016, Sniffing out a dangerous vapor,;

Sep. 16, 2015, Interfacial Nanofiber Composites for Trace Alkane Detection,

Mar. 11, 2015, New Nanofiber-based Electronic Nose Introduced by Vaporsens, Demo at Pittcon Conference, Booth #227, March 9-12.

Feb. 27, 2015, Homeland Defense and Security Information Analysis Center (HDIAC), Spotlight: Nanofibers For Trace Explosive Detection,

Feb. 2015, our collaborative work with Vaporsens was featured by CEP Magazine of AIChE (American Institute of Chemical Engineers),

Jan. 28, 2015, our sensor research was featured in the Presidents Blog, Institution of Chemical Engineers,

Jan. 21, 2015, Our carbon nanotube sensors were featured by NSF ,,

Dec. 22, 2014, our carbon nanotube research was among Top 5 News Features of 2014 on,

Dec. 8, 2014, Ling Zang was featured in Diplomatic Courier, A global Affairs Magazine,

Dec. 3, 2014, our sensor research was featured KSL news,

No. 13, 2014, Our carbon nanotube research was featured at AAAS Science Update,

Nov. 11, 2014, our explosives detection technique was featured by Fortune, 

Nov. 10, 2014, our research team was featured by Fox13 TV, Scientists working on bomb sniffing device at U of U, , the Daily Utah Chronicle.

Nov. 4, 2014, our carbon nanotubes sensor research was featured in Salt Lake Tribune newspaper,, Fox13 News,, KUER Radio, , NSF,,  and NSF Facebook,

- April 29, 2014, Vaporsens is coverred in a news release, "U Spin-Out Takes Major Strides Forward With New Round of Federal Funding."

- April 29, 2014, Miao successfully defended his Ph.D thesis. Congrats!

- April 24, 2014, Helin successfully defended his Ph.D thesis. Congrats!


Old News Archived

- April 29, 2014, Vaporsens is coverred in a news release, "U Spin-Out Takes Major Strides Forward With New Round of Federal Funding."

- April 29, 2014, Miao successfully defended his Ph.D thesis. Congrats!

- April 24, 2014, Helin successfully defended his Ph.D thesis. Congrats!

- May 29, 2013, R&D of our new sensor technology in collaboration with Vaporsens was covered in Channel 2 (CBS/KUTV) Morning News,

- Feb. 21, 2013, Vaporsens was invited to demonstrate its explosives and narcotics detection techniques at the Innovation Fair at the State Capitol, see the live coverage by Fox 13 News,

- Feb. 11, 2013, Vaporsens lands $150K SBIR,

- Feb. 1, 2013, our electronic nose research is reported in the Daily Utah Chronicle,

- Dec. 14, 2012, our sensor research and commercialization effort through Vaporsens is highlighted in a report by the Salt Lake Tribune, "University of Utah is a startup machine, according to survey".

- July 24, 2012, KSL (Channel 5) TV covers our recent research success in narcotic sensors and the commercialization collaboration with Vaporsens Inc.   click for the news clip:

- July 9, 2012, our research in electronic dog nose is reported in Innovation Utah,

- July 6, 2012, Congrats to Yanke for election into the 3rd round of "Youth 1000-Talent Plan" of China (�年�人计划), a government endowed professorship.

- April 27, 2012, Ben Bunes is awarded with the prestigious NASA Space Technology Research Fellowships (NSTRF). It is extremely competitive to get this award. Congratulations, Ben.

- April 19, 2012, our lab is featured in the 2012 issue of "Business in Utah", the Official Publication of the Governor's Office of Economic Development.

- March 15, 2012, Congratulations to Ben, Miao and Helin, representing University of Utah, their project “Vapor Detection of Peroxide-Based Improvised Explosive Devices� won the ten finalists for the Sixth Annual National Security Innovation Competition --- The National Homeland Defense Foundation (NHDF) today.

- Feb. 16, 2012, one of our explosives detector devices was part of the USTAR Science Fair showcase at the State Capitol Rotunda, where our Ph.D. students Ben, Miao and Helin demonstrated how the device works (2nd and 3rd photos). 

- December, 2011, our explosives sensor research and technology development were featured in the November/December issue of Zions Bank Community magazine: No Mean Feet - Nano Net Detects Explosives.

- November, 2011, our heavy metal sensor research was covered in the Fall 2011 issue of UofU Innovations Newsletter.

- November 16, 2011, Zang gave an invited feature talk at Salt Lake Community College on the topic of "Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy through Nanotechnology". see the follow up report by the Globe:

- October 8, 2011, Bringing mercury pollution to light: U. scientist creates faster, cheaper way to measure mercury. ,, 

- October 6, 2011, Faster, cheaper mercury test could provide answers for China 

- August 31, 2011, Dr. Zang commented on "Nanotechnology emerges in energy efficiency" with  Leonardo Energy,

- July 13, 2011, Governor Herbert declared July 13, 14 and 15 as the Utah-Qinghai EcoPartnership days during the National Governors Association Meeting held in SLC. Metallosensors is part of the EcoPartnership, and mentioned in the declaration. Click here for the PDF of Declaration.

- June 8, 2011, MetalloSensors was awarded a SBIR grant for developing next generation of device for Trace Mercury Detection.

- June 3, 2011, Utah Pulse: Nanotechnology and the New Energy Economy, reporting Dr. Zang's new book with Springer and his interview on renewable energy and the impact brought by nanotechnology; also covered in the USTAR network.

- May 16, 2011, Welcome Dr. Ligui Li joining us as a postdoctoral fellow.

- April 11-15, 2011, Dr. Ling Zang delivered an invited talk at the 2011 Workshop on Trace Explosives Detection.

- March 28, 2011, Congratulations to Ben, Miao and Helin! Their project titled "Low-Cost, Portable Detection of Peroxide-Based Improvised Explosive Devices"� has been selected as one of the ten finalist for the Fifth Annual National Security Competition at the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado on April 29, 2011.

March 18, 2011, The Utah Entrepreneur Challenge announced the top 10 teams for its 2011 competition today. VaporoSens team led by Lassonde Students is among the final 10. UEC announces top-10 teams.

- Feb. 28, 2011, our research on trace explosive detection was featured on KUER radio: 

- Feb. 1, 2011, our research and development work on sensors is highlighted by the Zions Bank "Speaking on Business" program through KSL News Radio.

- the Zions Bank "Speaking on Business" is a radio program highlighting businesses throughout Utah and Idaho. The week of Jan. 31st, the spotlighted companies and breakthrough research associated with USTAR. The host of the program is Chris Redgrave, former general manager of KSL NewsRadio in Salt Lake City, and past chair of the Salt Lake Chamber Board of Governors.

- Jan. 26, 2011, Utah Center of Trace Explosives Detection (UCTED) is established, with sponsorship of the State's Centers of Excellence program.

- Jan. 24, 2011, Chengyi's paper "Fluorescent nanoscale zinc(ii)-carboxylate coordination polymers for explosive sensing" was amongst the top ten accessed articles of ChemComm in the month December 2010 after published online. You can browse the full list of top 10 articles here.

- September 14, 2010, Dr. Zang was appointed as an Entrepreneurial Faculty Scholar (EFS) of the University of Utah.

- September 2, 2010, Zengxing's work on Reversible Dispersion and Release of Carbon Nanotubes Using Foldamers is now accepted for publication in Journal of the American Chemical Society.

- July, 2010, a new way of making graphene -- a single layer of carbon atoms -- for potential use in high-speed electronic devices. 

- May 15, 2010, Ben, Helin, and Miao presented "the Magic of Color" and demonstrated hands-on excitments at NanoDays 2010, Utah.  NanoDays is a nationwide festival of educational programs about nanoscale science and engineering.  This year, NanoDays Utah was hosted by the Nano Institute of Utah at the University of Utah, in partnership with The Leonardo, Utah Science Center, and the Utah Museum of Natural History, more details can be found here:

- Dec., 2009, our research in nanomaterials and applications in trace explosives detection and clean energy were featured in the 2009 Research Report, College of Engineering:

- August 31, 2009, our patented technology on nanofibril explosives sensory materials is now licensed to ICx Technologies, a leading manufacturer of explosives detectors, as featured in a News Paper, the Southern Illinoisan.

- April 17, 2009, Earth Day in Utah: our research in sensors and solar cells leads to part of the prospective of creating cleaner environment, 

- Feb. 18, 2009, Detecting Danger at the Nanoscale: Technology to Improve Security, Environment,

- Dec. 18, 2008, The explosives sensor research was highlighted by Utah Pulse, 

- Dec. 10, 2008, Dr. Zang attended a USTAR luncheon with Governor Huntsman.

- Dec. 5, 2008, Dr. Zang was interviewed by KSL Radio on the new explosives sensor research,  

- Dec. 4, 2008, Our research was reported by The Daily Utah Chronicle,

- Aug 2008, Our lab moved from the Southern Illinois University to University of Utah, as part of the USTAR program,

- Feb 2008, Yanke's paper on mercury sensing published in ChemComm is featured as a "Hot Article" by the journal.

- Nanofiber research highlighted in Materials Today, July Issue, 2007.

- Yanke's ultralong nanobelts are highlighted in ACS weekly News, June 6, 2007, also in a Chemistry Web:

- June 7, 2007, Nanotechnology research at NESMI lab is featured in a News Paper, Southeast Missouri.

- May 31, 2007, Expedient Explosives Detection via Nanofibril Sensor Films now featured on TV, the Heartland News, KFVS12 (CBS). (click for the scripture)

- May 29, 2007, Explosives Sensing research featured in a News Paper, the Southern Illinoisan.

- Tam's JACS paper on Explosives Sensing is highlighted in Nature Nanotechnology, May 25, 2007.

- Explosives Sensing research featured in ACS weekly News, May 23, 2007, also in Science Daily, in SoftPedia, and in PhysOrg.

(updated in August 2010)

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