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photo of Xiangyu Li wearing grey polo shirt

Xiangyu Li

Assistant Professor


August 2022 – Present
Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

June 2019 – July 2022
Postdoctoral Associate, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


  • Building energy efficiency
  • Radiative cooling
  • Thermal energy storage
  • High temperature heat exchanger
  • Solar desalination
  • Atmospheric water harvesting


PhD, 2018, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

BS, 2012, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China

Professional Service

  • Reviewer for Nature Energy, Nature Communications, ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, Nano Energy, Journal of Heat Transfer, etc.
  • Co-chair of poster session for 2021 Materials Research Society (MRS) Fall Meeting and Exhibit.

Awards and Recognitions

2021 Finalist for 2021 R&D 100 Awards

2021 Guinness World Record, World’s Whitest Paint


  1. Zhang, L., Li, X.(co-first-author with equal contribution), Zhong, Y., Leroy, A., Xu, Z., Zhao, L., & Wang, E.N. (2022). Highly Efficient and Salt Rejecting Solar Evaporation via A Wick-Free Confined Water Layer. Nature Communications, 13(1), 1-12.
  2. Tong, Z., Peoples, J., Li, X., Yang, X., Bao, H., & Ruan, X. (2022). Atomistic characteristics of ultra-efficient radiative cooling paint pigments: the case study of BaSO4. Materials Today Physics, 100658.
  3. Peoples, J., Hung, Y. W., Li, X., Gallagher, D., Fruehe, N., Yuksel, A., & Ruan, X. (2022). Concentrated Radiative Cooling. Applied Energy, 310, 118368.
  4. Li, X., Wilson, C., Zhang, L., Bhatia, B., Zhao, L., Leroy, A., Youngblood, J., Trice, R., & Wang, E.N., Design of A Multiscale Porous Ceramic Heat Exchanger for High-Temperature Applications with Ultrahigh Power Density. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 194, 122996.
  5. Li, X., Peoples, J., Yao, P., & Ruan, X. (2021). Ultrawhite BaSO4 Paints and Films for Remarkable Daytime Subambient Radiative Cooling. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 13(18), 21733-21739. Selected as a Cover Article and reported by news media globally including BBC, CNN, USA TODAY, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Guardian.
  6. Li, X., Peoples, J., Huang, Z., Zhao, Z., Qiu, J., & Ruan, X. (2020). Full Daytime Sub-ambient Radiative Cooling in Commercial-like Paints with High Figure of Merit. Cell Reports Physical Science, 1(10), 100221. Covered by news media globally including BBC, Washington Post, The Conversation, Science Magazine, ABC.
  7. Zhu, J., Zhang, L., Li, X., Wilke, K. L., Wang, E. N., & Goddard, L. L. (2020). Quasi‐Newtonian Environmental Scanning Electron Microscopy (QN‐ESEM) for Monitoring Material Dynamics in High‐Pressure Gaseous Environments. Advanced Science, 7(19), 2001268.
  8. Peoples, J., Li, X., Lv, Y., Qiu, J., Huang, Z., & Ruan, X. (2019). A Strategy of Hierarchical Particle Sizes in Nanoparticle Composite for Enhancing Solar Reflection. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 131, 487-494.
  9. Li, X., Park, W., Wang, Y., Chen, Y. P., & Ruan, X. (2019). Reducing Interfacial Thermal Resistance Between Metal and Dielectric Materials by A Metal Interlayer. Journal of Applied Physics, 125(4), 045302.
  10. Li, X., Park, W., Chen, Y. P., & Ruan, X. (2017). Absence of Coupled Thermal Interfaces in Al2O3/Ni/Al2O3 Sandwich Structure. Applied Physics Letters, 111(14), 143102.
  11. Li, X., Park, W., Chen, Y. P., & Ruan, X. (2017). Effect of Particle Size and Aggregation on Thermal Conductivity of Metal-Polymer Nanocomposite. Journal of Heat Transfer, 139(2).
  12. Park, W., Li, X., Mandal, N., Ruan, X., & Chen, Y. P. (2017). Compressive Mechanical Response of Graphene Foams and Their Thermal Resistance with Copper Interfaces. APL Materials, 5(3), 036102.
  13. Park, W., Guo, Y., Li, X., Hu, J., Liu, L., Ruan, X., & Chen, Y. P. (2015). High-Performance Thermal Interface Material Based on Few-Layer Graphene Composite. The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 119(47), 26753-26759.


photo of Xiangyu Li wearing grey polo shirt

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