Professor Sarah Zhang


Professor Sarah Zhang joined in School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics at Western Sydney University (WSU) as an Associate Professor since Janurary 2019. She is now the Discipline Leader (Civil & Environmental) and the Research Theme Champion (Environment and Sustainability) of WSU.  Before she moved to WSU, she worked in the School of Engineering and Information Technology at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Canberra for 11 years as a Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and then Associate Professor. She worked in UNSW Sydney for three years from 2004-2006 first as a Research Associate and then a Lecturer in School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. She worked as a postdoctoral research fellow in the University of Queensland from 2001-2002, and Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea from 2002-2003 after completing her PhD in the University of Hong Kong in 2001. She obtained her Bachelor degree and Master degree from Tianjin University, China in 1992 and 1995. She was awarded the Postgraduate certificate for Higher Education by the University of New South Wales in 2007.

Dr. Zhang’s research interest has been on advanced materials and novel application of advanced materials in civil and mechanical/aeronautical structures. In civil engineering, she works on green construction materials by using industrial by-products and high-performance fibre reinforced cementitious composite aiming to achieve durable, resilient and sustainable infrastructures. In mechanical/aeronautical engineering, she focuses on studies on composite materials and structures aiming to enhance the structural integrity and performance. She has a strong expertise on numerical modelling and analysis and in addition to using the experimental technique she also uses advanced numerical modelling to calibrate the mechanical behaviour of materials and model the structural behaviour including under extreme loading conditions such as impact/blast/fatigue/fire loadings. Since 1998, she has published over200 peer-reviewed scholarly research papers including more than 70 research papers in top international journals in her research areas. She was awarded research grant of over $2.5 millions from various schemes including ARC. She was awarded one ARD DPon composites and one ARC LIEF grant in 2019. In addition, she is a chief investigator (CI) of the ARC research hub for Nanoscience-based Construction Material Manufacturing which was awarded an ARC funding of $5 million, she is the lead CI of one project on green cement and the CI of one research project on composites under the hub. She led one defence project working with her partners in DST Groups to develop high strength nanocomposite adhesive. She was awarded the Spitfire Defence Memorial Fellowship in 2011 and received by the Australian Governor in General for her research on impact-resistance construction material. She has supervised 9 PhD students and 1 Master student to completion as a primary supervisor and supervised 4 postdoctoral research fellows and 30 visiting research fellows/PhD students till 2018. She has served as local organisation committee and international technical committee member or advisory board member for over 10 international conferences and hold the editorship for two international journals. She has been a frequent reviewer for up to 20 leading International journals.

This information has been contributed by Professor Zhang.


  • PhD University of Hong Kong

Professional Memberships

  • Australian Association of Computational Mechanics (2020 - 2020)
  • International Association for Computational Mechanics (2020)
  • Research Theme Champion (Environment & Sustainability) (2020)


  • Spitfire Defence Memorial Fellowship 2011-12-01


  • Composite materials and structures
  • Computational Mechanics, numerical methods and simulation
  • Green construction and building material using industry by-product
  • High performance fibre reinforced cementitious composites
  • Mechanical and structural behaviour under extreme loadings, such as impact/blast/fatigue/fire
  • Multiscale modelling of mechanical behaviour of composite materials

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Dean's Unit, School of Eng, Design & Built Enviro.
  • Engineering
  • Dean's Unit School of Engineering
  • Engineering


  • Professoriate Leadership Group

Contact Sarah:

Phone (02) 47360 916
Location Penrith (Kingswood)
Room XB.3.31