Dr. Zhenghe Xu’s main research is in the area of interfacial science and surface chemistry as applied to natural resources processing and utilization. He was elected to Fellow of Canadian Academy of Engineering in 2008 and Fellow of Royal Society of Canada in 2015. Based on Web of Science, Dr. Xu has published over 480 peer-reviewed SCI journal papers, which has been cited over 17000 times, with an h-index of 63. Dr. Xu has co-authored 2 books and co-edited 2 books, with 21 issued patents . Dr. Xu has educated 82 undergraduate students, 83 master students, 35 doctoral students, and 53 post-doctoral students.

     Working Experience

  • 2021-Present-Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Canada
  • 2016-Present-Dean, College of Engineering, Southern University of Science and Technology, Shenzhen, China
  • 2016-2022-----Visiting Professor, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, Japan
  • 2011-2017------Visiting Chair Professor, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
  • 2000-2020----Professor, Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada
  • 1997-1999------Associate Professor, Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada
  • 1992-1996------Assistant Professor, Department of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
  • 1991-1992------Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA
  • 1990-1991------Research Associate, Department of Mining and Minerals Processing Engineering, Virginia polytechnic Institute and State University,Blacksburg, USA

     Major Recognition

  • Airey Award, Metallurgical and Materials Society of CIM, Canada, 2021.
  • Alberta Science and Technology (ASTech) Leadership Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement in Science and Engineering, 2018.
  • Executive Member of Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC), 2018-Present.
  • Alberta Science and Technology Outstanding Achievement Award, 2018.
  • IMPC Council Member, 2016-2020.
  • President, Metallurgy and Materials Society of CIM, 2016-2017.
  • MetSoc Award for Research Excellence, Metallurgical and Materials Society of CIM, Canada, 2016.
  • Fellow of Royal Society of Canada (FRSC), 2015.
  • Syncrude Award for Excellence in Sustainable Development, Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM), 2015.
  • The Teck Environmental Award, Metallurgical and Materials Society of CIM, Canada, 2013.
  • APEGA Frank Spragins Technical Award, Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists, 2012.
  • Bantrel Award in Design and Industrial Practice, Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering, 2009.
  • NSERC Industry Research Chair in Oil Sands Engineering, 2008-2018.
  • Fellow of Canadian Academy of Engineering, 2008.
  • Canada Research Chair (Tier I) in Mineral Processing, 2006-2020.

Journal Papers

  1. Ren, G., Sun, Z., Wang, Z., Xu, Z. and D. Sun, 2019, Nanoemulsion formation by the phase inversion temperature method using polyoxypropylene surfactants, J. Colloid Interface Sci..
  2. Li, R., Manica, R., Yeung, A. and Z. Xu, 2019, Spontaneous displacement of high viscosity micron size oil droplets from a curved solid in aqueous solutions, Langmuir.
  3. Yue, T., Sun, W., Hu, Y., Z. Xu, 2019, Mechanism of goethite precipitation on magnetite and maghemite nanoparticles studied by surface complexation/precipitation modeling, Langmuir.
  4.  Wang, C., Najafi, A., Masliyah, J., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2019, Flocculant-assisted dewatering of fluid fine tailings using a volute screw press, Can. J. Chem. Eng., 97: 74-83.
  5. Chen, Q., Zhu, Y., Wang, M., Ren, G., Liu, Q., Xu, Z. and D. Sun, 2019, Viscosity reduction of extra-heavy oil using toluene in water emulsions, Colloids Surfaces A, 560: 252-259.
  6.  Chen, X., Ma, X., Yan, C., Sun, D., Yeung, T. and Z. Xu, 2019, CO2-responsive O/W microemulsions prepared using a switchable superamphiphile assembled by electrostatic interactions, J. Colloid Interface sci., 534: 595-604.
  7. Tang, Y., Zhang, X., Choi, P., Xu, Z. and Q. Liu, 2019, Contributions of van der Waals interaction and hydrophobic attraction to molecular adhesions on a hydrophobic MoS2 surface in water, Langmuir, 47: 14196-14203.
  8. Wang, Z., Ren, G., Yang, J., Xu, Z. and D. Sun, 2019, CO2-responsive aqueous foams stabilized by pseudogemini surfactants, J. Colloid Interface Sci., 536: 381-388.
  9. Liang, C., He, X., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, Adsorption-based synthesis of magnetically responsive and interfacially active composite nanoparticles for dewatering of water-in-diluted bitumen emulsions, Energy & Fuels, 32: 8078-8089.
  10. Qiao, P., Harbottle, D., Li, Z., Tang, Y. and Z. Xu, 2018, Interactions of asphaltene subfractions in organic media of varying aromaticity, Energy & Fuels, 32: 10478-10485.
  11. Zhang, X., Manica, R., Tang, Y., Tchoukov, P., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, Probing boundary conditions at hydrophobic solid-water interfaces by dynamic film drainage measurement, Langmuir, 34: 12025-12035.
  12. Ren, D., Xu, S., Sun, D., Wang, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, CO2-switchable dispersion of a natural chitosan and its application as a responsive Pickering emulsifier, Colloids Surfaces A, 555: 507-514.
  13. Liu, B., Manica, R., Zhang, X., Bussonniere, A., Xu, Z., Xie, G. and Q. Liu, 2018, Dynamic interaction between a millimeter size bubble and surface microbubbles in water, Langmuir, 34: 11667-11675.
  14. Jackman, M., Bussonniere, A., Leung, H., Xu, Z., Tsai, P. and Q. Liu, 2018, Effect of temperature on foamability using a thermoresponsive polymer, AIP Advances, 8: 075320.
  15. Li, Z., Xiong, Y., Sun, S., Zhang, L., Li, S., Liu, X., Xu, Z. and S. Xu, 2018, Tri-layer nonwoven membrane with shutdown property and high robustness as a high-safety lithium ion battery separator, J. Membrane Sci., 565: 50-60.
  16. Ren, G., Wang, M., Wang, L., Wang, Z., Chen, Q., Xu, Z. and D. Sun, 2018, Dynamic covalent silica nanoparticles for pH-switchable Pickering emulsions, Langmuir, 34: 5798-5806.
  17. Ye, R., Lin, L., Li, Q., Zhou, Z., Wang, T., Russell, C., Adidharma, H., Xu, Z., Yao, Y. and M. Fan, 2018, Recent progress in improving the stability of copper-based catalysts for hydrogenation of carbon–oxygen bonds, Catal. Sci. Technol., 8: 3428-3449.
  18. Yu, K., Zhang, H., Biggs, S., Xu, Z., Cayre, O. and D. Harbottle, 2018, The rheology of polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated silica nanoparticles positioned at an air-aqueous interfaces,  J. Colloid Interface Sci., 527: 346-355.
  19. Mhatre, S., Simon, S., Sjöblom, J. and Z. Xu, 2018, Demulsifier assisted film thinning and coalescence in crude oil emulsions under DC electric fields, Chemical Engineering Research and Design, 134:  117-129.
  20. Ayirala, S. C., Yousef, A. A., Li, Z. and Z. Xu, 2018, Coalescence of crude oil droplets in brine systems:  effect of individual electrolytes, Energy & Fuels, 32:  5763-5771.
  21. Tao, H., Liu, S., Luo, J. L., Choi, P., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, Descriptor of catalytic activity of metal sulfides for oxygen reduction reaction:  a potential indicator for mineral flotation, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 6:  9650-9656.
  22. Zhu, Y., Yan, C., Liu, Q., Masliyah, J. and Z. Xu, 2018, Biodiesel-assisted ambient aqueous bitumen extraction (BA3BE) from Athabasca oil sands, Energy & Fuels, 32:  6565-6576.
  23. Irfan, M., Bisson, T., Bobicki, E., Arguelles-Vivas, F., Xu, Z., Liu, Q. and T. Babadagli, 2018, CO2 storage in saline aquifers by dissolution and residual trapping under supercritical conditions: An experimental investigation, Colloids Surfaces A, 548: 37-45.
  24. Tang, Y., Zhang, X., Choi, P., Manica, R., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, Single-molecule MoS2-polymer interaction and efficient aqueous exfoliation of MoS2 into single-layer, J. Phys. Chem. C, 122: 8262-8269.
  25. Tang, Y., Zhang, X., Choi, P., Liu, Q. and Z. Xu, 2018, Underwater adhesion of a stimuli-responsive polymer on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite: A single-molecule force study, J. Phys. Chem. C, 122: 6721-6729.
  26. Pensini, E., Tchoukov, P., Yang, F. and Z. Xu, 2018, Effect of humic acids on bitumen films at the oil-water interface and on emulsion stability: potential implications for ground water remediation, Colloids Surfaces A:, 544: 53-59.
  27. Anvari, M., Liu, Q., Xu, Z., P. Choi, 2018, Molecular dynamics study of hydrophilic sphalerite (110) surface as modified by normal and branched butylthiols, Langmuir, 34: 3363-3373.
  28. Liu, S., Tao, H., Liu, Q., Xu, Z., Liu, Q. and J. Luo, 2018, Rational design of silver sulfide nanowires for efficient CO2 electroreduction in ionic liquid, ACS Catalysis, 8: 1469-1475.
  29. Liu, S., Wang, X., Tao, H., Li, T., Liu, Q., Xu, Z., Fu, X. and J. Luo, 2018, Ultrathin 5-fold twinned sub-25nm silver nanowires enable highly selective electroreduction of CO2 to CO, Nano Energy, 45: 456-462.
  30. Xiong, Y., Li, Z., Cao, T., Xu, S., Yuan, S., Sjoblom, J. and Z. Xu, 2018, Synergistic adsorption of polyaromatic compounds on silica surfaces studied by molecular dynamics simulation, J. Phys. Chem. C, 122: 4290-4299.
  31. Yue, T., Xu, Z., Hu, Y., Han, H. and W. Sun, 2018, Magnetic separation and recycling of goethite and calcium sulfate in zinc hydrometallurgy in the presence of maghemite fine particles, ACS Sustainable Chem. Eng., 6: 1532-1538.
  32. Chen, Q., Cao, T., Xiong, Y., Wang, C., Lin, Z., Chen, Z., Xu, S. and Z. Xu, 2018, Understanding interactions between clay and model coal surfaces in electrolyte solutions by a QCM-D with dissipation study, Energy Fuels, 32: 233-240.
  33. Yang, F., Tchoukov, P., Qiao, P., Ma, X., Pensini, E., Dabros, T., Czarnecki, J. and Z. Xu, 2018, Studying demulsification mechanisms of water-in-crude oil emulsions using a modified thin liquid film technique, Colloids Surfaces A:, 540: 215-223.
  34. Li, Z., Wang, W., Han, Y., Zhang, L., Li, S., Tang, B., Xu, S. and Z. Xu, 2018, Ether modified poly (ether ether ketone) nonwoven membrane with excellent wettability and stability as a lithium ion battery separator, J. Power Sources, 378: 176-183.
  35. Liu, S., Zhong, H., Liu, G. and Z. Xu, 2018, Cu(I)/Cu(II) mixed-valence surface complexes of S-[(2-hydroxyamino)-2-oxoethyl]-N,N-dibutyldithiocarbamate: Hydrophobic mechanism to malachite flotation, J. Colloids Interface Sci., 512, 701-712.



              Research Areas

    • Interfacial and colloidal chemistry
    • Industry waste treatment and reutilization
    • Molecular forces
    • Recycling
    • Surface Engineering
    • Mineral processing

    Petroleum Engineering