University COVID-19 update

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The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology main office (QNC 3606) is closed until further notice. If you are a student trying to pick up or return a lab/office key, please email for assistance. All other inquires can be directed to For emergencies, contact Campus Police.

Boxin Zhao

Professor, Chemical Engineering

Research interests: fundamental and practical aspects of adhesion, wetting, and friction of soft bio-nanomaterials, e.g. polymers, liquid crystals elastomers, and biological tissues, under micro- and nanometer confinements. Two major areas of interests are the design and fabrication of "smart" biomimetic devices with tailored physical, chemical, and interfacial properties and the development of novel conductive adhesives as a lead-free and multifunctional joining alternative for electronic packaging.


Professor  Boxin Zhao is a professor in chemical engineering at the University of Waterloo in Canada. He obtained his PhD in Chemical Engineering from McMaster University in 2004, worked as a postdoc at UCSB in 2005-2008.  Since joining the University of Waterloo in 2008, Professor Zhao has established and directed the Laboratory of Surface Science and Bionanomaterials. He has 100+ peer-refereed papers on the top journals including Macromolecules, Langmuir, ACS Nano, Advanced Materials, Nature Materials, and Chemical Society Reviews. He was awarded a prestigious Fulbright Visiting Research Chair at UCSB in 2015, and an Engineering Research Excellence Award at the University of Waterloo in 2017, and a Faculty of Engineering Distinguished Performance Award in 2019.  The current research interests of his group are in the areas of smart polymers, bionanomaterials, soft materials, surface science, biomimetic adhesion and robotic devices, 3D printing, advanced manufacturing, etc.


  • PhD, Chemical Engineering, McMaster University, 2004

  • MEng, Chemical Technology, Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing, 1999

  • BEng, Mineral Engineering, Central South University, China, 1996

Boxin Zhao

    University of Waterloo