Xunxiang Hu

Wigner Fellow

Dr. Hu’s research is in the field of irradiation effects on materials, and focuses on gas behavior in structural materials used in fission and fusion environments. He has been committed to expanding the current fundamental understanding of the interactions between gaseous foreign species and irradiation-induced defects by applying a combined experimental and modeling approach.


  • Ph.D., Nuclear Engineering, Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA (2013)                                     
    Advisor: Brian D. Wirth
  • M.S., Nuclear Engineering, Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China (2009)
  • B.S. and Engineering, Summa Cum Laude, Nuclear Science and Engineering, School of Nuclear Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China (2007) 

Research Experience: 

  • 09/2014–present -  Materials Science and Technology Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN
    Wigner Fellow – Research Associate
    • Investigated gas behavior in structural materials in fusion and fission energy environment by using a combined experimental and modeling approach.
  • 07/2013–09/2014 - Department of Nuclear Engineering,  University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
    Post-doc Research Associate for Prof. Brian D. Wirth
    • Studied tritium permeation and mitigation strategy of FeCrAl alloys for ATF cladding application.
    • Investigated oxidation kinetics of FeCrAl alloys under severe accident conditions.
    • Designed and constructed positron annihilation spectroscopy and thermal desorption spectrometry with a in situ 20 keV helium ion gun at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for studying irradiation damage and gas behavior in structural materials of fission and fusion reactors.
  • 01/2010–05/2013 - Department of Nuclear Engineering,  University of California, Berkeley, CA
    Research Assistant for Prof. Brian D. Wirth   
    • Combined cluster dynamics model based on reaction-diffusion rate theory with thermal helium desorption spectrometry and positron annihilation spectroscopy to study helium-point defect interactions in iron.
    • Developed a comprehensive model to simulate irradiation hardening of iron after low dose and low temperature neutron irradiation.
  • 05/2012–09/2012 - Materials Science and Technology Division,  Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN     
    Summer intern of NESLS program supervised by Dr. Kurt A. Terrani  
    • Investigated the kinetics of hydrogen desorption from zirconium hydride by building a static vacuum hydriding system to produce δ-zirconium hydride and developing a 1D diffusion-controlled two-phase moving boundary model to simulate the hydrogen desorption spectrum obtained from thermal desorption spectrometry. 

Teaching Experience:

  • Teaching Assistant at Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Berkeley
    • NE 155: Introduction to Numerical Simulations in Radiation Transport (2012)
    • NE 124: Nuclear Waste Management (2011)
    • NE 161: Nuclear Power Engineering (2010)
    • E 117: Engineering Analysis (2009)


  • Member of American Nuclear Society (Since 2010)
  • Member of Materials Research Society (Since 2011)
  • Member of The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society (Since 2012)

Refereeing Activities:

  • Reviewed papers for 2014 ANS Annual Meeting (Nuclear Fuels & Structural Materials for Next Generation Nuclear Reactors)
  • Reviewed papers for The 3rd Global Conference on Materials Science and Engineering (CMSE 2014)
  • Reviewed papers for Journal of Nuclear Materials
  • Reviewed papers for 20th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering


Eugene Wigner Fellowship, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, (2014)
‘China Merchants Property Development Co. Ltd.’ Scholarship (first-class) in Tsinghua University (2008)
Excellent Graduate of Shanghai  (2007)
‘Baosteel Group Corporation’ Scholarship for Excellent Student (2006)
Excellent Academic Scholarship (first-class) of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (2006)
‘China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group’ Scholarship (2005)
Excellent Student Leader of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (2004)