Dr Ning Zhao PhD, MSc, BSc

Dr Ning Zhao

Department of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering
Research Fellow – Operations Simulation

Contact details

Telephone
+44 (0) 121 414 47522
Fax
+44 (0) 121 414 4291
Email
n.zhao@bham.ac.uk
Address
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Dr Ning Zhao is a research fellow at the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE) within the traction system and energy research group.

His research interest includes railway system modelling, train signalling system simulation, energy consumption optimisation, railway traffic management and operations approaches. He has published a number of high quality papers.

Ning is currently working on railway energy-efficient driving strategy projects (DriveSmart).  

Qualifications

  • PhD in Electronic, Electrical and Computer Engineering, 2013. The University of Birmingham.
  • MSc in Communication Engineering (with Merit), 2009. The University of Birmingham.

Biography

Dr Ning Zhao is a research fellow in the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education within the traction system and energy research group. He received his PhD degree in 2013, which aims to analyse and optimise train interaction and energy consumption by implementing optimal train trajectory with differing train signalling systems.  

He is currently leading the development of the university train simulator and energy optimisation projects. He has over 10 years’ experience in research on railway energy saving, railway system modelling, train trajectory optimisation and optimisation techniques. Dr Zhao has been involved in a number of projects regarding DriveSmart; integrated system energy-saving solutions and power supply network fault simulations with SMRT; Edinburgh Tram; Siemens and Beijing Metro. He has published a number of research papers in top journals including IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems, Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, etc.

Teaching

  1. Lecture of BEng LI Railway Traction
  2. Lecture of MSc RT2-IPW Railway Technology Infrastructure of Permanent Way
  3. Lecture of MSc RT2-CCC Command, Control and Communications
  4. Module leader of MSc LMR36 Railway Control Systems Engineering

Postgraduate supervision

As an academic member of the BCRRE, Ning supports PhD, MSc and BEng projects that fall within his research area and expertise.

Research

  • Railway system modelling;
  • Train trajectory optimisation;
  • Railway timetable optimisation;
  • Railway energy saving technologies;
  • Data analysis and software development;
  • Algorithm development.

Publications

  • Z. Tian, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, T. Dowens, and C. Kerr, “SmartDrive: Traction Energy Optimization and Applications in Rail Systems,” IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, pp. 1-10, 2019.
  • R. Dunbar, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, “A tool for the rapid selection of a railway signalling strategy to implement train control optimisation for energy saving,” Journal of Rail Transport Planning & Management, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 224-244, 2017/12/30/, 2017.
  • Z. Li, L. Chen, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, “Dynamic Trajectory Optimization Design for Railway Driver Advisory System,” IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Magazine, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 121-132, 2018.
  • H. Wang, N. Zhao, B. Ning, T. Tang, and M. Chai, “Safety monitor for Train-Centric CBTC System,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, 2018.
  • N. Zhao, L. Chen, Z. Tian, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, and J. Lv, “Field test of train trajectory optimisation on a metro line,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, vol. 11, no. 5, pp. 273-281, 2017.
  • N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, Z. Tian, P. Weston, and L. Chen, “An integrated metro operation optimization to minimize energy consumption,” Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, vol. 75, pp. 168-182, 2017.
  • Z. Tian, P. Weston, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, and L. Chen, “System energy optimisation strategies for metros with regeneration,” Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, vol. 75, pp. 120-135, 2017.
  • J. Lv, L. Chen, T. Tang, and N. Zhao, “Chinese train control system principles,” IRSE NEWS, vol. 9, no. 225, pp. 4, 2016.
  • M. Chen, C. Roberts, P. Weston, S. Hillmansen, N. Zhao, and X. Han, “Harmonic modelling and prediction of high speed electric train based on non-parametric confidence interval estimation method,” International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems, vol. 87, pp. 176-186, 2017.
  • M. Chen, Q. Li, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Tricoli, N. Zhao, and I. Krastev, “Modelling and performance analysis of advanced combined co-phase traction power supply system in electrified railway,” IET Generation, Transmission & Distribution, vol. 10, no. 4, pp. 906-916, 2016.
  • Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, P. Weston, N. Zhao, L. Chen, and M. Chen, “Energy evaluation of the power network of a DC railway system with regenerating trains,” IET Electrical Systems in Transportation, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 41-49, 2016.
  • S. Umiliacchi, G. Nicholson, N. Zhao, F. Schmid, and C. Roberts, “Delay management and energy consumption minimisation on a single-track railway,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 50-57, 2016.
  • N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, and G. Nicholson, “A Multiple Train Trajectory Optimization to Minimize Energy Consumption and Delay,” Intelligent Transportation Systems, IEEE Transactions on, vol. 16, no. 5, pp. 2363 - 2372, 2015.
  • H. Wang, N. Zhao, and L. Chen, “An integrated capacity evaluation method for CBTC- system-equipped urban rail lines,” Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit vol. 229, no. 3, pp. 291-302, 2015.
  • N. Zhao, C. Roberts, and S. Hillmansen, “The application of an enhanced Brute Force Algorithm to minimise energy costs and train delays for differing railway train control systems,” Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit, vol. 228, no. 2, pp. 158-168, 2014.
  • Z. Tian, G. Zhang, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, P. Tricoli, and C. Roberts, "Energy Evaluation for DC Railway Systems with Inverting Substations." pp. 1-6.
  • N. Zhao, L. Saade, Z. Chen, E. Stewart, C. Roberts, M. Yuan, T. Zhang, and J. Cai, “Fault Analysis of the Switch and Point Machine to Improve Railway Reliability,” in The Stephenson Conference: Research for Railway, London, 2017.
  • Z. Tian, P. Weston, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, "System energy optimisation of metro-transit system using Monte Carlo Algorithm." pp. 453-459.
  • H. A. Hamid, G. L. Nicholson, H. Douglas, N. Zhao, and C. Roberts, "Investigation into train positioning systems for saving energy with optimised train trajectories." pp. 460-468.
  • N. Zhao, Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, M. Yuan, J. Li, H. Shi, and K. Li, “Metro Traction and Power System Energy Optimisation,” in The Stephenson Conference, London, 2015, pp. 191-198.
  • Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, P. Western, L. Chen, N. Zhao, S. Su, and T. Xin, “Modeling and Simulation of DC Rail Traction Systems for Energy Saving,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 2354-2359.
  • N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Western, L. Chen, Z. Tian, T. Xin, and S. Su, “Train Trajectory Optimisation of ATO Systems for Metro Lines,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 1796-1801.
  • T. Xin, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Western, N. Zhao, L. Chen, Z. Tian, and S. Su, “Railway Vertical Alignment Optimisation at Stations to Minimize Energy,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 2119-2124.
  • N. Zhao, C. Roberts, and S. Hillmansen, “An approach for optimising railway traffic flow on high speed lines with differing signalling systems,” in Comprail 2012, New Forest, 2012, pp. 27-37.

[1]           Z. Tian, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, T. Dowens, and C. Kerr, “SmartDrive: Traction Energy Optimization and Applications in Rail Systems,” IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, pp. 1-10, 2019.

[2]           R. Dunbar, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, “A tool for the rapid selection of a railway signalling strategy to implement train control optimisation for energy saving,” Journal of Rail Transport Planning & Management, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 224-244, 2017/12/30/, 2017.

[3]           Z. Li, L. Chen, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, “Dynamic Trajectory Optimization Design for Railway Driver Advisory System,” IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Magazine, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 121-132, 2018.

[4]           H. Wang, N. Zhao, B. Ning, T. Tang, and M. Chai, “Safety monitor for Train-Centric CBTC System,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, 2018.

[5]           N. Zhao, L. Chen, Z. Tian, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, and J. Lv, “Field test of train trajectory optimisation on a metro line,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, vol. 11, no. 5, pp. 273-281, 2017.

[6]           N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, Z. Tian, P. Weston, and L. Chen, “An integrated metro operation optimization to minimize energy consumption,” Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, vol. 75, pp. 168-182, 2017.

[7]           Z. Tian, P. Weston, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, and L. Chen, “System energy optimisation strategies for metros with regeneration,” Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, vol. 75, pp. 120-135, 2017.

[8]           J. Lv, L. Chen, T. Tang, and N. Zhao, “Chinese train control system principles,” IRSE NEWS, vol. 9, no. 225, pp. 4, 2016.

[9]           M. Chen, C. Roberts, P. Weston, S. Hillmansen, N. Zhao, and X. Han, “Harmonic modelling and prediction of high speed electric train based on non-parametric confidence interval estimation method,” International Journal of Electrical Power & Energy Systems, vol. 87, pp. 176-186, 2017.

[10]       M. Chen, Q. Li, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Tricoli, N. Zhao, and I. Krastev, “Modelling and performance analysis of advanced combined co-phase traction power supply system in electrified railway,” IET Generation, Transmission & Distribution, vol. 10, no. 4, pp. 906-916, 2016.

[11]       Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, P. Weston, N. Zhao, L. Chen, and M. Chen, “Energy evaluation of the power network of a DC railway system with regenerating trains,” IET Electrical Systems in Transportation, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 41-49, 2016.

[12]       S. Umiliacchi, G. Nicholson, N. Zhao, F. Schmid, and C. Roberts, “Delay management and energy consumption minimisation on a single-track railway,” IET Intelligent Transport Systems, vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 50-57, 2016.

[13]       N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, and G. Nicholson, “A Multiple Train Trajectory Optimization to Minimize Energy Consumption and Delay,” Intelligent Transportation Systems, IEEE Transactions on, vol. 16, no. 5, pp. 2363 - 2372, 2015.

[14]       H. Wang, N. Zhao, and L. Chen, “An integrated capacity evaluation method for CBTC- system-equipped urban rail lines,” Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit vol. 229, no. 3, pp. 291-302, 2015.

[15]       N. Zhao, C. Roberts, and S. Hillmansen, “The application of an enhanced Brute Force Algorithm to minimise energy costs and train delays for differing railway train control systems,” Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit, vol. 228, no. 2, pp. 158-168, 2014.

[16]       Z. Tian, G. Zhang, N. Zhao, S. Hillmansen, P. Tricoli, and C. Roberts, "Energy Evaluation for DC Railway Systems with Inverting Substations." pp. 1-6.

[17]       N. Zhao, L. Saade, Z. Chen, E. Stewart, C. Roberts, M. Yuan, T. Zhang, and J. Cai, “Fault Analysis of the Switch and Point Machine to Improve Railway Reliability,” in The Stephenson Conference: Research for Railway, London, 2017.

[18]       Z. Tian, P. Weston, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, and N. Zhao, "System energy optimisation of metro-transit system using Monte Carlo Algorithm." pp. 453-459.

[19]       H. A. Hamid, G. L. Nicholson, H. Douglas, N. Zhao, and C. Roberts, "Investigation into train positioning systems for saving energy with optimised train trajectories." pp. 460-468.

[20]       N. Zhao, Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, M. Yuan, J. Li, H. Shi, and K. Li, “Metro Traction and Power System Energy Optimisation,” in The Stephenson Conference, London, 2015, pp. 191-198.

[21]       Z. Tian, S. Hillmansen, C. Roberts, P. Western, L. Chen, N. Zhao, S. Su, and T. Xin, “Modeling and Simulation of DC Rail Traction Systems for Energy Saving,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 2354-2359.

[22]       N. Zhao, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Western, L. Chen, Z. Tian, T. Xin, and S. Su, “Train Trajectory Optimisation of ATO Systems for Metro Lines,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 1796-1801.

[23]       T. Xin, C. Roberts, S. Hillmansen, P. Western, N. Zhao, L. Chen, Z. Tian, and S. Su, “Railway Vertical Alignment Optimisation at Stations to Minimize Energy,” in The 17th International IEEE Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Qingdao, 2014, pp. 2119-2124.

[24]       N. Zhao, C. Roberts, and S. Hillmansen, “An approach for optimising railway traffic flow on high speed lines with differing signalling systems,” in Comprail 2012, New Forest, 2012, pp. 27-37.