Effective July 1, Xiaolin Zhong, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, has been appointed chair of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department. A member of the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering faculty for more than 30 years, Zhong succeeded Tim Fisher, who had served as department chair since 2018.
Zhong leads the Hypersonics and Computational Aerodynamics Group. The group conducts research on the fundamental physics of hypersonic flows using advanced numerical tools and the application of discovered fundamental knowledge to real-world aerospace systems, such as the development of hypersonic planes and space vehicles.
He regularly teaches undergraduate courses on elementary fluid mechanics, aerodynamics, the mathematics of engineering and numerical methods for engineering applications. He also teaches graduate courses on compressible flows, computational aerodynamics, and hypersonic and high-temperature gas dynamics. Additionally, Zhong is the aerospace engineering area chair for the school’s Master of Science Online Program.
Zhong received his bachelor’s degree from Tsinghua University in China and his doctorate in aeronautics/astronautics from Stanford University, joining the UCLA faculty in 1991 as an assistant professor. He was promoted to associate professor in 1997 and to full professor in 2002. Zhong served as the department’s vice chair for graduate affairs from 2006 to 2011.