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Personal profile


Zhu Liu received a BSc in Materials Science from the Northeastern University, China in 1985 and a PhD in Laser Surface Engineering from the University of Liverpool in 1991. Between 1991 and 1999 she was a postdoctoral Research Associate at Liverpool University working on various laser surface modification techniques for improving the corrosion and wear resistance of engineering materials. In 1999 she was appointed as a Research Scientist with the British Royal Mint. She joined the Corrosion and Protection Centre, UMIST, in 2000 as a lecturer. She was promoted to senior lecturer in 2006 and reader in 2014. Her main research interests are laser surface modification for high performance materials and micro/nano engineering using lasers. Her current research laboratory is equipped with high power laser processing facilities. Research collaborations include Rolls-Royce, BNFL, BP, The Welding Institute and various academic research groups.


BSc. PhD

Research interests

  • Investigation into corrosion performances of various laser-processed components, including laser-textured, and laser-cleaned metallic alloys
  • Laser processing for perovskite solar cells
  • Laser generation of mesoscopic dye sensitised solar cells
  • Laser production of nanoparticles via ablation of metals and alloys in liquid
  • Laser/sol-gel hybrid process for generation of metal oxide thin films for energy applications
  • Laser surface modification of biodegradable Mg-based alloys for medical implant applications


My group

Research Group(s)


Currently I have 10 PhD students working on laser-related projects, as described below. 

·          Yudong Peng - Laser generation of Fe-Pt nanoparticles via ablation of Fe-Pt alloy in liquid. 

·          Raid Baiee – Study of stability and durability of laser-generated Ag nanoparticles for antibacterial applications

·          Qian Chen – One-step laser process for rapid manufacture of mesoscopic perovskite solar cells. 

·          Dong Wang – Laser processing of metal oxide scaffolds for perovskite solar cells

·          Aseel Hadi - Fibre laser sintered mesoscopic TiO2 thin films for dye sensitised solar cells

 ·         Mansour Alhabradi - Fibre laser processing of ZnO-based thin films for dye sensitised solar cells·  

           Yuxiang Liu – Electrochemcial studies of biodegradable Mg-Ca alloy in SBF solution

           Minxing Zhang - Corrosion behaviour of laser-textured stainless steel

          Chutimon Suebka - Corrosion behaviour of laser-cleaned aluminium alloys

          Chao Zhang - Laser/sol-gel hybrid processing of graphene-TiO2 nanocomposite films for energy applications

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Christabel Pankhurst Institute


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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