Lei Zuo, Robert E. Hord., Jr. Professor in the Virginia Tech Department of Mechanical Engineering, has been jointly appointed as Chief Scientist in Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)'s Energy and Environment Directorate. PNNL is operated by R&D nonprofit Battelle for the US Department of Energy.

The joint appointment will grant Zuo access to the resources and talent serving at both PNNL and Virginia Tech, and will supplement but not replace his position at the university. Zuo is the third Virginia Tech faculty who hold joint appointments with PNNL after Michael Hochella (2016) and Mitsu Murayama (2018).