State broadcaster features ZJU professor studying energy-efficient power devices


On March 4, Dr. YANG Shu, a research professor at ZJU's College of Electrical Engineering was featured on China Central Television (CCTV) news for her efforts to innovate energy-efficient power devices.

Headlined "Post-90s PhD Supervisor YANG Shu: Pouring Efforts into Research and Creating Environmentally-friendly and Energy-saving Devices", the news footage highlighted the significance of Yang's research as well as her decision to return to China after her postdoctoral studies abroad.

Gallium nitride (GaN) and silicon carbide (SiC) belong to a new generation of semiconductor materials. They are used to create power electronic devices with low loss, fast switching and other desirable characteristics, which represent the current key technology in power electronics invested in by developed countries. With in-depth research on this frontier, YANG was selected for the twelfth batch of China’s “National Thousand Young Talents Program". After joining the College of Electrical Engineering in 2016, she started developing this technology, which can help to protect the environment and save energies.

The semitransparent wafer (pictured above) is a two-inch intrinsic GaN based homogeneous epitaxial material. It will turn into functional chips after a series of micro-nano processes including lithography, ion implantation, and metallization. Despite its ordinary appearance, the material can be used to produce hundreds of power electronic devices. With GaN, a device can block voltage up to a few kilovolts and conduct current up to tens of amperes in a few square millimeters. Compared with traditional semiconductor material-silicon, the new device can dramatically reduce power loss and increase efficiency and operating frequency. Within this research field, YANG and her team have gained wide recognition. Over the past five years, she has published over 60 papers in international journals and conferences.

At 20, YANG received a bachelor's degree in Microelectronics from Fudan University. At 24, she graduated from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology with a PhD in Electronic and Computer Engineering. After finishing her postdoctoral research at the University of Cambridge, YANG joined ZJU as one of the youngest PhD supervisors at the University.

“I think it is very meaningful to be able to return to my motherland and the environment I’m familiar with. The research platform is also very good, allowing me to focus on what I love. Through my efforts, I hope to contribute what I can to the development of this academic discipline,” YANG Shu told CCTV.

College of Electrical Engineering Dean Professor SHENG Kuang said: “As China’s economy and the entire nation have developed very well in these years, the demand for talent is becoming urgent. Also, China provides young talent with excellent opportunities for further development. I think these factors can explain why many young people decide to come back and serve their motherland after finishing studies abroad.”

In 2012, the Power Electronic Device Laboratory (PEDL) at Zhejiang University and the Suzhou New District (SND) in Jiangsu province jointly set up a laboratory dedicated to the development of new semiconductor power electronic devices. This is one of the few laboratories in China with R & D in this field. By using this platform, YANG and her team have been doing research on lower loss, higher frequency of new type of GaN and SiC power electronic devices. Their aim is to create power electronic devices which are more suitable for smart grid and new energy vehicles, etc.

Media contact

Ms. ZHOU Xing (, College of Electrical Engineering