Imagination is more important than knowledge

Albert Einstein

Our research group values the integration of science and technology from multiple disciplines to address the infrastructure challenges. This generally requires knowledge from different areas, but more importantly, it requires “out-of-the-box” ideas and imaginations.

We borrow Einstein’s energy equation to explain how to achieve great things:

E=mc², where E is “Excellence”, m is “motivation”, c² is “creativity” by “critical thinking”


We have keen interests in exploring fundamental mechanisms of and innovative countermeasures to emerging infrastructure challenges, particularly in the broad area of smart, sustainable and resilient geotechnical engineering. Our research is highly interdisciplinary including high-definition numerical modeling of interactions between particulate materials and flow, experimental development and characterization of bio-inspired and smart materials, development and application of bio-inspired infrastructure design and etc.


Bio-inspired Infrastructure: Mechnism of burrowing, Bio-inspired self-boring robotics, Bio-inspired geotechnical characterization tools, Erosion control/prevention by MICP, Bio-inspired smart materials for structural health monitoring

Sustainable Infrastructure: Foundamental erosional behavior of soils; Bridge scour countermeasures; energy geotechnics

Smart Infrastructure: Smart Geosynthetics, Smart sensors, Underground wireless sensing network


Numerical Modeling: Multi-scale, Multi-physics, CFD, DEM, FEM, CFD-DEM coupling

Theoretical Modeling: critical shear stress for surface erosion, critical hydraulic gradient  for internal erosion, statistical data analysis

Element-scale tests: erodibility, flume tests, permeability, tri-axial tests, nanocomposites synthesis and characterization

Field-scale tests: field monitoring of earth pressure, ground water table, drainage efficiency