• Ph.D., Nuclear Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK), 2019
  • M.S., Statistics, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, 2019
  • M.S., Nuclear Engineering, North China Electric Power University,2016
  • B.S., Nuclear Engineering, North China Electric Power University, 2013 


Dr. Fan Zhang received her Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering and M.S. in Statistics from UTK in 2019. She is the recipient of the 2021 Ted Quinn Early Career Award from the American Nuclear Society and joined the Woodruff School in July, 2021. She is actively involved with multiple international collaborations on improving nuclear cybersecurity through the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the DOE Office of International Nuclear Security (INS). Dr. Zhang’s research primarily focuses on the cybersecurity of nuclear facilities, online monitoring & fault detection using data analytics methods, instrumentation & control, and nuclear systems modeling & simulation. She has developed multiple testbeds using both simulators and physical components to investigate different aspects of cybersecurity as well as process health management.

Research Areas and Descriptors

Research interests include instrumentation & control, autonomous control, cybersecurity, online monitoring, fault detection, prognostics, risk assessment, nuclear system simulation, data-driven models, and artificial intelligence applications.  


  • Ted Quinn Early Career Award, American Nuclear Society (ANS), 2021
  • Data challenge winner, Shared Micromobility and Infrastructure, Knoxville City Hackathon, 2020
  • Best paper award, Smoky Mountain Data Challenge, 2019
  • International Society of Automation (ISA) Educational Foundation Scholarship, 2019
  • 2019-2020 ANS Graduate Scholarship, 2019
  • Top Paper Submission, ANS Student Conference, 2019
  • Best Presentation in cybersecurity, ANS Student Conference, 2019
  • UT Extraordinary Professional Promise Award, 2018
  • 2018-2019 ANS Graduate Scholarship, 2018
  • 2018-2019 OR/K ANS Scholarship, 2018
  • ISA Process Measurement and Control Division (PMCD) Scholarship, 2018
  • 2017-2018 Robert E. Uhrig Graduate Scholarship, 2017
  • Professional Women in the ANS Travel Grant, 2017
  • Alpha Nu Sigma National Honor Society, 2017

Selected Publications

[1] F. Zhang, J. Coble, “Robust Localized Cyber-attack Detection for Key Equipment in Nuclear Power Plants,” Progress in Nuclear Energy, 128, 103446, 2020.

[2] F. Zhang, J.W. Hines, J. Coble, “A Robust Cybersecurity Solution Platform Architecture for Digital Instrumentation and Control Systems in Nuclear Power Facilities,” Nuclear Technology 206.7: 939-950, 2020

[3] F. Zhang, H. Kodituwakku, W. Hines, J. Coble, “Multi-Layer Data-Driven Cyber-Attack Detection System for Industrial Control Systems Based on Network, System and Process Data,” IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, vol 5, No.7, pp 4362- 4369, 2019.