Fu Zhao

Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Environmental and Ecological Engineering
(765) 494-6637


  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, 2005
  • M.S., Electrical Engineering Systems, University of Michigan, 2001
  • M.E., Thermal Engineering, Tsinghua University, 1996
  • B.S., Environmental Engineering, Thermal Engineering, Tsinghua University, 1993

Research Summary

Dr. Zhao's research focuses on sustainability issues related to the manufacturing process and the life cycle of manufactured products. Some of his current research project topics include assessing the sustainability of solar thermal systems, integrating sustainability factors into product design and process planning, soybean oil based metalworking fluids, water footprint quantification of manufacturing processes, gasification of waste biomass for liquid fuel production, and biofuel supply chain dynamics under disturbances.

Selected Publications

  • Quantifying the water inventory of machining processes, Zhao, Fu; Ogaldez, Jonathan; Sutherland, John W.; CIRP Annals - Manufacturing Technology, 2012.
  • Life cycle assessment of potential biojet fuel production in the United States, Agusdinata, Datu B; Zhao, Fu; Ileleji, Klein; Delaurentis, Dan; Environmental Science and Technology, v 45, n 21, p 9133-9143, November 1, 2011.
  • Integration of sustainability into early design through the function impact matrix, Devanathan, Srikanth; Ramanujan, Devarajan; Bernstein, William Z.; Zhao, Fu; Ramani, Karthik; Journal of Mechanical Design, Transactions of the ASME, v 132, n 8, p 0810041-0810048, August 2010.

  • Full publication list available here

Awards and Honors

  • ASME Fellow, 2018 - 2019
  • First place, 2018 RAMP: Reusable Abstractions of Manufacturing Processes Challenge (Organized by NIST in partnership with NSF, ASME, SME, and ASTM)
  • First Place, Poster competition, 22nd Design for manufacturing and life cycle conference, Cleveland, Ohio, August 6-9, 2017
  • Outstanding Paper Award, Forty-Third North American Manufacturing Research Conference, Charlotte, NC, June 8-12, 2015
  • Seed of Success, 2014, Purdue University
  • Honorable mention, 2013 National Sustainable Design Expo (organized by EPA)