Edmond Zhou attended Peking University for his undergraduate work in physics before coming to MIT to pursue a PhD in the field. He chose physics, he said, because he was curious about “how this world works, and how nature works.”
“I wanted to understand those things and physics provides answers,” he said. “Physics opens doors and windows to a lot of new questions and new worlds – which is fun.”
Outside of his academic work, Edmond enjoys classical music (Tchaikovsky is a favorite), swimming, and playing badminton. He actually serves as the captain of the MIT physics department’s graduate student intramural badminton team, a group that has several championships under its belt.
Edmond has been involved in CSHub research for over year. His current research on modeling freeze thaw in concrete. “When I started this project on ions, I didn’t realize there was a surface absorption effect, later I realized that the surface effect can be important—which is an example of the fun of exploration in our work. Sometimes you find some new, interesting physics in the problem,” he said.
Edmond is also interested in history, and Chinese history in particular. He likes to read about the Han and Ming dynasties. “Those societies, how people organized their society and how they lived, were a different world materially but somehow we share a lot of common thoughts and ideas,” he said. “I’m interested in how these things relate.”
Edmond has a research brief due out next month which offers updates to his recent research on freeze-thaw damage.