Pengwang Zhai

Pengwang Zhai
Contact Information

Physics, Rm 427

Research Group


Associate Professor
Graduate Program Director – Atmospheric Physics


Ph.D. Physics – Texas A&M University, 2006
M.S. Physics – Jilin University, China, 2001
B.S. Physics – Jilin University, China, 1998

Previous Experience

Dr. Pengwang Zhai had worked as a postdoctoral research associate in the physics department at TAMU for two years. Then he had been a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellow at NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) for one year. Dr. Zhai had worked as a senior research scientist at Science Systems & Applications, Inc. from 2009 to 2014 before he joined the Physics Department.

Professional Interests

Dr. Zhai’s research interests are in light scattering by irregular particles, vector radiative transfer in coupled atmosphere and ocean systems, and remote sensing of aerosols and hydrosols. He is enthusiastic about understanding inherent optical properties of hydraulic algae particles and developing algorithms to monitor and retrieve these particles in our natural environments. In order to extract information from optical signals, the multiple scattering in the turbid media has to be taken care of. One of his main research focuses is to explore accurate and efficient ways to solve the polarized radiative transfer equation. With the help of light scattering and radiative transfer theories, Dr. Zhai strives to develop new and better remote sensing algorithms for aerosols and ocean color using satellite or airborne measurements from multi-directional, multi-wavelength, multi-polarized sensors.


A complete list of publications can be found at:

Google Scholar Site (link: