Areas of expertise


Dr Xu received BEng and MEng degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Zhejiang University of Technology in China. He obtained his PhD from the University of Southampton working on damage tolerance characterisation of high strength airframe aluminium alloys. 

Prior to his current appointment as the Senior Lecturer in Strcutures at Cranfield University, Dr Xu was the Senior Lecturer in Aerospace Structures at the University of Hertfordshire from February 2004 to January 2016. Dr Xu had three years industrial experience working as the Fatigue and Damage Tolerance Design Engineer at Airbus UK from March 2001 to February 2004. He was a visiting scholar at the University of Oxford from August 1996 to August 1997 and post-doctoral research assistant at the University of Oxford from October 2000 to March 2001. Dr Xu also had nine years teaching experience at the Zhejiang Sci-Tech University in China.

Current activities

Dr Xu's research has been focused on the integrity and durability of engineering materials and structures. His areas of expertise include fatigue and damage tolerance analysis of metallic and composite structures, fracture mechanics, performance of wind turbines under icy conditions, impact damage characterization of composite structures, and computational method developing for structural health monitoring. 

Dr Xu over 10 years teaching experience in UK covering topics of structural mechanics, mechanics and properties of materials, aerospace structural design and analysis, and aeroelasticity. He is the module leader of 'Introduction to Continuum Mechanics' and 'Thin-walled Structures' at Cranfield University.  


Dr Xu has carried out projects funded by Airbus UK, MBDA UK Ltd/EPSRC, Sir Geoffrey de Havilland Memorial Fund, and EC (FP7).
  • Load sequence effect and enhanced life prediction of airframe structures under spectrum loading, funded by Sir Geoffrey de Havilland Memorial Fund & Airbus UK, 10/2005 – 05/2009.
  • The use of inverse methods in determining applied dynamic loads on aerospace structures, funded by MBDA UK Ltd and EPSRC, 10/2008 – 09/2011.
  • Application of electromagnetic fields for enhancement of structural metal performance (EMFforMET), EU FP-7, 07/2011 – 06/2013.
  • Enhanced damage tolerance design for aerospace industry, funded by India UK Staff Exchange Programme, 12/2012 – 01/2013.
  • Effect of ice accretion on the dynamic behaviour of wind turbine, funded by Albalqa’s Applied University in Jordan and Narvik University College in Norway, 01/2012 – 01/2016.
  • Impact analysis of an amphibian aircraft landing on water, funded by the Ministry of Higher Education of Malaysia, 07/2012 – 07/2016.


Articles In Journals