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Z. Jane Wang

  • Z. Jane Wang
  • Dept: Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
  • Title: Professor
  • Address: 323 Thurston Hall
  • Phone: 607 255-5354
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  • BS Physics, Fudan University, Shanghai, China, (1989).
  • PhD Physics, University of Chicago (1992-1996). 
  • NSF-NATO Fellow, Theoretical Physics, Oxford University (1996).
  • Visiting Member, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences-New York University (1997-1999).
  • Assistant (1999-2004), Associate (2004-2009), Professor (2009-), Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, Cornell (1999-2009),
  • Professor Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (2009-),
  • Professor Physics, Cornell (2010-)

Research Interests

Much of our work is driven by our desire to see and conceptualize the world around us. We strive to find sharp and intuitive answers to inter-connected puzzles in complex systems.

Current research: Insect Flight (Unsteady Aerodynamics, 3D Flight Dynamics and Control, From Dynamics to 'Brain'), Fluttering and Tumbling Objects in Fluids, Computational Fluid Dynamics, Hydrodynamic Interactions, and Interactions Among Organisms.

Prior research: Statistical Physics of Turbulence, Turbulent Diffusion, Fokker-Planck Equation, and Random Non-Hermitian Matrices.

Teaching Interests

Biological Fluid Dynamics (MAE6270/PHYS7617), Physics of Living Organisms (PHYS7685), Fluid Dynamics (MAE6010), Applied Mathematics

Selected Publications

  • Z. Jane Wang. 2016. "Insect Flight: From Newton's Law to Neurons." Annual Review of Condensed Matter Physics 7 (1): 281-300.
  • Noest, R., Z. Jane Wang. 2016. "Tiger Beetle's Pursuit of Prey Depends on Distance." Physical biology.
  • El Yacoubi, A., S. Xu, Z. Jane Wang. 2016. "The effect of gravity and dimensionality on the impact of cylinders and spheres onto a wall in a viscous fluid." Physics of Fluids 29 (2): 020717-020717.
  • Z. Jane Wang. 2015. Insect Flight. Princeton Companion to Applied Mathematics.
  • Z. Jane Wang, Melfi Jr James. 2015. "Initial Observation of Flight Dynamics of Drosophila with their MNb1 Motor Neuron Silenced (Manuscript in Preparation)." Paper presented at APS/DFD 2015

Selected Awards and Honors

  • NSF Early Career Award (National Science Foundation) 2001
  • ONR Young Investigator (Office of Naval Research) 2001
  • David and Lucile Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering (David and Lucile Packard Foundation) 2002
  • Cornell Provost's Award for Distinguished Scholarship (Cornell University) 2005
  • Radcliffe Fellowship for Advanced Study (Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University) 2007



  • Ph D (Physics), University of Chicago, 1996