Soft Matter, Topological Mechanics, and Self-Assembly

Xiaoming Mao

Department of Physics
University of Michigan
450 Church St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Phone: 734-763-5349
Office: 2251 Randall

Research Interests

  • Soft matter physics: fundamental theories for rigidity and their applications to jamming, glass transition, and biopolymer gels
  • Topological mechanics: Topological states in mechanical systems, Maxwell lattices, topological floppy modes and states of self stress
  • Self assembly: geometrically frustrated self assembly in colloidal and nanoparticles systems, complex particle systems
  • Biological physics: cell mechano-sensing and migration in extracellular matrices
  • Materials physics: mechanical metamaterials, fracturing control

Education and Training

  • Postdoctoral Fellow 2008-2012, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pennsylvania.
  • PhD 2008, Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    Thesis: Statistical Physics of Soft Random Solids: Vulcanization, Heterogeneity, and Elasticity
  • MS 2004, Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • BS 2002, Physics, Peking University, China


  • My group currently has openings for postdoctoral researchers and graduate students on topological mechanics, soft matter, and self-assembly problems.  Please email me if you are interested!