Professor Chun Hui Wang


Professor Wang is the Head of the School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering and an elected Fellow of the Academy of Technological Science and Engineering (FTSE). He joined UNSW in 2016 as a SHARP professor in recognition of his world-leading research and leadership. Previously he held appointments as the Head of Advanced Composites Technologies at the Defence Science and Technology Organisation between 1995 and 2009, and the Director...view more

Professor Wang is the Head of the School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering and an elected Fellow of the Academy of Technological Science and Engineering (FTSE). He joined UNSW in 2016 as a SHARP professor in recognition of his world-leading research and leadership. Previously he held appointments as the Head of Advanced Composites Technologies at the Defence Science and Technology Organisation between 1995 and 2009, and the Director of the Sir Lawrence Wackett Aerospace Research Centre at RMIT University between 2009 and 2016. He received his bachelor's degree from Huazhong University Science and Technology in 1985 and PhD from the University of Sheffield in 1991, where he carried out his post-doctoral research until 1993. 

He serves on the Editorial Advisory Boards of a number of professional journals, including Composites Science and Technology and Composites Part A. His past service experience to the professional community include the ARC College of Experts (2013-2015), Chair of the National Committee on Applied Mechanics (2013-2015), and President of the Australian Fracture Group (1997-2003). He has chaired and co-chaired a number of international conferences, including the 11th International Fatigue Congress (Melbourne Australia, 2014) and the 22nd International Conference on Composite Materials in 2019. 

My Grants

Some current research projects include:

  • ARC-Discovery project (2019-2021) Novel multiscale fibre composites for cryogenic space technologies, Prof. Chun H. Wang, Dr. Shuying Wu, Prof. Tony Kinloch, and Dr. Francis Rose. This project aims to develop novel composite materials technologies for cryogenic fuel storage applications by suppressing microcracking of fibre composites at cryogenic temperatures.
  • ARC-Discovery project (2018-2020) Nonlinear frequency mixing methods for materials and damage evaluation, Prof. Chun H. Wang, A/Prof Martin Veidt, Dr. Francis Rose. This project aims to systematically investigate new approaches for frequency mixing in nonlinear ultrasonics and to demonstrate their potential for the non-destructive evaluation of material degradation and early damage detection. 
  • ARC Industry Transformation Training Centre (ARC ITTC 2018-2022) in Fire Retardant Materials and Safety Technologies (2017-2021), Prof. G. Yeoh, Prof. Chun Wang, et al.  This ARC Training Centre aims to train a cohort of industry-focused researchers to improve the fire safety of lightweight materials and structures and fire protection systems including fire suppression. Video.
  • ARC Industry Transformation Research Hub (ARC ITRH 2019-2024) for Integrated Energy Storage Solutions, Prof. Joe Dong, G. Wang, R. Amal, K-F Aguey Zinsou, J. Bao, and Chun H. Wang, et al. This project aims to develop advanced energy storage technologies, including printed batteries, structural supercapacitors, innovative fuel cells, power-to-gas systems, and integrate these storage solutions with existing energy networks and applications using novel storage monitoring, control and optimisation technologies.
  • CRC-P (2018-2021) Development of an Advanced Fire Retardant for Polymers and Textiles, in collaboration with Fire Security International. Prof. G. Yeoh, Chun H. Wang, and Cyrille Boyer.
  • CRC-P (2019-2021) Autonomous intelligent fire protection system, in collaboration with Fire Security International. Prof. Chun H. Wang, G. Yeoh, and Cyrille Boyer.
  • Defence Science and Technology Group (2019-2020) Integrated computational material engineering, Prof. Graham Schaffer (Melbourne University) and Prof. Chun H. Wang.
Examples of recently completed projects
  • ARC-Discovery project (2015-2017) Baseline-free Methods for Early Damage Diagnosis using Nonlinear Ultrasound. Prof. Chun H. Wang, A/Prof M. Veidt (UQ), Prof. W-K Chiu (Monash), Prof. F. Rose (DSTO), Prof. H. Sohn (KAIST). Self-generated nonlinear waves for non-destructive evaluation and structural health monitoring techniques. Major applications: (a) impact damage in advanced composite materials, (b) non-destructive evaluation of structures made by additive manufacturing, and (3) detection of hard-to-inspect locations in unitized structures. 
  • ARC-LIEF (2018) National laser-based non-destructive evaluation system, Prof. Chun H. Wang, et al. The project establishes the first Australian national facility on non-destructive evaluation, consisting of 3D scanning laser vibrometer, laser shearography, and an optical de-rotator, to enable full-field characterisation of the deformation and damage state of materials and structures.
  • ARC-Linkage project (2015-2017) Strong and durable flame-retarding composites by multi-scale encapsulation and reinforcement. Dr Jun Ma, Professor Chun Wang, et al.
  • ARC-Linkage project (2015-2017) Multifunctional three-dimensional non-crimp fibre preforms for polymer composites: innovative high-value products for the Australian textiles industry. Professor Adrian Mouritz, Professor Chun Wang, and Associate Professor Floreana Coman.
  • ARC-Discovery Project (2014-2016) Aligning and Chaining Carbon Nanofillers in Fibre Composites: Synergistically Improving Damage Tolerance and Diagnosis. Investigators: Prof Chun H. Wang, Dr. Jin Zhang, Prof. Adrian P. Mouritz, A/Prof K. Ghorbani, Prof Anthony Kinloch (FRS, Imperial College of London)
    To advance a new concept of aligning nano-scale reinforcements along the thickness direction of composite materials. The new composite material will offer dual scale reinforcement to address through-thickness weaknesses of fibre-reinforced composites and improved electrical conductivity.
  • ARC-Linkage Project (2012-2016) Improving affordability of composite materials to meet sustainability challenges: carbon fibre wheel to drive clean technology. Chief Investigators: Prof Chun H. Wang, Prof A. Mouritz, Dr A. Akbar; Dr T. Hilditch, Dr A Alireza; Dr M. Dingle; Prof Q. Yang and Dr B Cox
  • The project will develop new technologies to improve the affordability of carbon fibre composites for non-aerospace applications. The outcome of this project will greatly accelerate the insertion of lightweight composites in clean energy products, such as carbon fibre composite wheels, to drastically reduce CO2 emissions of road transport.
  • Reversible hydrogen fuel cell technology, Capability Technology Demonstrator (2014-2016), Department of Defence. A/Prof. John Andrews and Prof. Chun Wang

My Awards

2018    Fellow of Australian Academy of Technological Science and Engineering (FTSE)

2015    RMIT University Research Excellence Award

2013    Best Research Performance Award, RMIT University

2011    Achievement Award for Science and Engineering Excellence, DSTO

2009    Best Research Award, DSTO

2002    Defence Science Fellowship, DSTO

2000    Best Research Award, DSTO

1999    Australian Academy of Science Fellowship Award.

1998    Best Scientific Paper Award, DSTO.

1995     Best Paper Award by the Journal of Strain Analysis.

My Research Activities

Professor Wang's research focuses on the mechanics of advanced materials and manufacturing, including multifunctional composites and light alloys. He has co-authored two books on composite repairs and more than 400 articles and reports (Google Scholar and Research Gate). His research has made great impacts on engineering practice for fatigue design, advanced composites, and structural health monitoring of aircraft. His innovations have been incorporated in world-leading software for fatigue design (Wang-Brown model in MSC Fatigue), engineering manuals/standards for designing composite repairs, and time-reversal imaging algorithm adopted in international patents and commercial products for structural health monitoring. He is currently leading a number of research projects on nano-scale engineering of multifunctional composites with enhanced electrical, thermal and mechanical properties with potential applications to improve anti-static, electromagnetic shielding, strain sensing, energy storage, damage detection, and flame retardancy capabilities of polymers and fibre composites. 

Videos on some of his current research are available on YouTube and ARC Fire Centre.

A recent example of working with industry partners is to develop conformal radar antenna for unmanned surface vessels.

In 2020 his team has partnered with an Australian SME manufacturer Omni Tanker and Lockheed Martin to begin commercial-scale production of lightweight composite vessels for the transportation and storage of liquid hydrogen at minus 253 degrees Celsius. The vessels build on a key technology developed by his team in collaboration with Lockheed Martin and Omni Tanker, which enables composite vessels to operate at liquid hydrogen temperatures without matrix cracks, a challenge that has, up until now, prevented mass-market adoption of these materials for such applications. Media Release.

In 2021 he successfully led the establishment of ARC Research Hub for Connected Sensors for Health, which brings together 30 companies and 64 researchers to co-design, verify, and certify sensors that industry partners will deploy to global health markets.

Recent plenary presentations at international conferences:

  • 9th National Committee on Applied Mechanics, Sydney, 2017 
  • 11th Asia-Australasian Conference on Composite Materials, Cairns, 2018
  • European Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, Manchester, 2018
  • Asia Pacific Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, Hong Kong, 2018
  • Emerging Sensing Technologies Summit, Melbourne, 2018
  • 13th International Conference on the Mechanical Behaviour of Materials, June 2019
  • 10th Australasian Congress on Applied Mechanics, 29 November - 1 December 2021
  • 12th International Conference on Structural Integrity and Failure, 5-8 December 2021

My Research Supervision

Areas of supervision

Advanced fibre composite materials and structures

Adhesive bonding and composite repairs

Flexible and stretchable sensors for health monitoring

Structural energy storage (structural batteries and structural capacitors)


Currently supervising

Ms Yuyan Yu (PhD candidate): Multi-modality sensors

Mr. Wenkai Chang (PhD candidate): Nano-engineering of carbon fibre composites for liquid hydrogen storage

Mr. Feng Huang (PhD candidate): Mechanically stiff and soft capacitors

Mr. Andrew Charles (PhD candidate): Fibre-Reinforced Magneto-Polymer Matrix Composites for Unmanned Air Systems

Mr. Benjamin Tynan (PhD candidate): Structural supercapacitors

Mr. Gang Li (PhD candidate): Flexible composites for sensing and energy harvesting

Mr. Wenmu Yang (PhD candidate): Non-toxic flame retardants for polymers and composites

Mr. Yuansen Qiao (PhD candidate): Piezoelectret sensors

Mr. Shanshi Gao (PhD candidate): Self-powered sensors and actuators

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