Ming Chen
    Post-Doctoral Researcher
    Ph.D., Laboratory for Nanometallurgy, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH-Zurich), Switzerland
    M.S., Materials Science, RWTH-Aachen, Germany
    B.S., Metallurgical Engineering, University of Science and Technology Beijing (USTB), China

    Current project(s):
    Thermoelectrics and Fe based alloys

    Phone: 872.806.8121
    Email: ming.chen@northwestern.edu

I received my B. Eng, M.Sc and Ph.D in materials science and engineering from University of Science and Technology Beijing (2012), RWTH-Aachen (2015) and ETH-Zurich (2020). During my PhD, I focused on studying micromechanical properties of covalent crystals, i.e. diamond, Silicon and Germanium, over a wide range of temperatures by using in situ micro-compression inside scanning electron microscope. After PhD, I joined Paul Scherrer Institute and worked as a postdoctoral researcher to study laser powder bed fusion manufacturing and bi-axial deformation of alloys using synchrotron X-ray diffraction method.

In NU, I will apply different techniques, including 3D ink writing and freeze casting, to additively manufacture thermoelectrics, multiple principle elemental alloys and Fe based alloys for structural and functional applications.

Selected Honors

  1. The Best Oral Presentation in international conference of "Extended Defects in Semiconductors 2018", Thessaloniki, Greece, June 2018.
  2. b. The Best Poster Presentation in MML symposium "Advanced nano-mechanical techniques for academic and industrial research" 2018, Aachen, Germany, Dec 2018.


  1. M. Chen, L. Pethö, A. S.Sologubenko, H. Ma, J. Michler, R. Spolenak, J.M. Wheeler. Achieving micron-scale plasticity and theoretical strength in Silicon, Nature Communications, (2020), 11(1), 1-10.
  2. M. Chen, J.P. Best, I. Shorubalko, J. Michler, R. Spolenak, J.M. Wheeler. Influence of helium ion irradiation on the structure and strength of diamond, Carbon, (2020), 337-345.
  3. M. Chen, J. Wehrs, A.S. Sologubenko, J. Rabier, J. Michler, and J. M. Wheeler. Size-dependent Plasticity and Activation Parameters of Lithographically-produced Silicon Micropillars, Materials and Design, (2020), 108506.
  4. I. Basu, M. Chen, J. Wheeler, R. E. Schäublin, J. F. Löffler, Stacking-fault mediated plasticity and strengthening in lean, rare-earth free magnesium alloys, Acta Materialia, (2021), 211, 116877.
  5. M. Chen, J. Wehrs, J. Michler, J.M. Wheeler. High-Temperature In situ Deformation of GaAs Micro-pillars: Lithography Versus FIB Machining, JOM, (2016), 11, 2761-2767. (Cover Article)
  6. I. Basu, M. Chen, J. Wheeler, R. E. Schäublin, J. F. Löffler, Segregation-driven exceptional twin-boundary strengthening in lean Mg-Zn-Ca alloys, Acta Materialia, (2022), 117746.
  7. S. Fritze,M. Chen, L. Riekehr, B. Osinger, M.A. Sortica, A. Srinath, A.S. Menon, E. Lewin, D. Primetzhofer, J.M. Wheeler, U. Jansson. Magnetron Sputtering of Carbon Supersaturated Tungsten Films-A Chemical Approach to Increase Strength. Materials and Design, (2021), 208, 109874.
  8. C.M. Lauener, L. Petho,M. Chen, Y. Xiao, J. Michler, J.M. Wheeler. Fracture of Silicon: Influence of rate, positioning accuracy, FIB machining, and elevated temperatures on toughness measured by pillar indentation splitting, Materials and Design, (2018), 142, 340-349.
  9. I. Basu, M. Chen, M. Loeck, T. Al-Samman, D.A. Molodov. Determination of grain boundary mobility during recrystallization by statistical evaluation of electron backscatter diffraction measurements, Materials Characterization, (2016), 117, 99-112.