Dr. Shao is a research staff member at IBM T. J. Watson Research Center. She graduated from Tsinghua University in China with a B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering, and then came to the United States in 1997 for graduate school. She graduated from The Johns Hopkins Univerisity in 2002 with a Ph.D. degree in Materials Science and Engineering. She joined the electrochemistry research group at IBM T. J. Watson Research Center in 2002 for a hard disk thin film head project. Later on she moved onto microelectronics involved in the copper damascene process development for IC circuit interconnect projects and spent two years in IBM's semiconductor development site. After that she has led a few research joint development projects with external partners, including:
- a four year engagement with REC (one of the top silicon solar panel manufacturer in the world);
- a 3-year engagement with Solar Frontier and TOK on developing new thin film material CZTS for photovoltaics and helped improving the world record conversion efficiency beyond 13%;
- a joint development project with Samsung and Micron on STT non-volatile memory and helped solving a major contamination mystery
She was fascinated by statistics and data analytics while working in the fully automated semiconductor development line by the tremendous amount of data. By using statistics and data analytics she gained critical insights and helped solving several tough hidden mysteries in the product development cycle and significantly improved the product yield.
Dr. Shao joined the Physical Analytics group in mid 2014 and transformed herself into a data scientist. She is working on renewable energy forecast by combining physical models with machine learning. In October 2015, she led the solar energy forecast task supporting University Michigan Solar Car team in the World Solar Challenge race. She is also involved in building a big data platform called PAIRS to tackle geospatial data analytics.