About me

I am an Assistant Professor in Computer Science at Johns Hopkins University. I am looking for self-motivated students on research projects in wireless networking and mobile computing. Please check my past papers to get a general understanding of my research style and check Notes to the Prospective Students.

My research interests are centered around wireless networking and mobile computing, with a particular focus on next-generation wireless network architectures (5G millimeter-wave, 6G joint communication and sensing, Internet of Things), novel radio hardware and software design (software-defined radio, wireless brain interfaces, low-power ultra-wide-band) and ubiquitous communication and sensing systems (smart homes, virtual/augmented reality, localization, ultra-reliable RFID for supply chains).

I have published in several top conferences, including ACM SIGCOMM, MobiCom, and USNIEX NSDI. In recognition of my work on massive MIMO millimeter-wave software radio, I was awarded the Best Paper Award at ACM MobiCom 2020. My work on this project has also been highlighted by ACM GetMobile, the top pick of the ACM SIGMOBILE area.

I received the M.S. degree (2020) and Ph.D. degree (2023) at Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in UC San Diego, advised by Professor Xinyu Zhang. I received my B.E. degree from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2018, where I worked on Backscatter Communications with Professor Xiaohua Tian and Professor Xinbing Wang.


  • 04/2024. Invited to serve on NSDI’25 TPC. Please consider submitting! <–* I will fly to China and visit some universities since Nov. 18th (first stop at SJTU), Nov. 27th to Dec. 1st in Beijing (28th at THU, 29th at PKU), Dec. 4th to 6th in Nanjing (5th at NJU), 7th at USTC, 8th at HUST, 9th at NEU, 11th to 13th in Zhejiang (12th at ZJU), 14th to 15th back to Shanghai (TBD). Feel free to contact me if you want to talk to me in person.–>
  • 08/2023. Invited to serve on HotMobile’24 TPC. Please consider submitting!
  • 08/2023. Organized M-Cube User Workshop. Check M-Cube website for updates.
  • 08/2023. Officially graduated and start as an assistant professor at JHU.
  • 06/2023. Pass the final defense at UC San Diego!
  • 04/2023. NSDI’23 talk: Presented SlimWiFi.
  • 12/2022. On job market (Faculty/Research positions).
  • 12/2022. NSDI’23 paper: SlimWiFi, Asymmetric Communication for Ultra-Low-Power IoT Radio.
  • 11/2022. Sensys’22 posters: Ultra-Wideband Backscatter and RF-Chord.
  • 10/2022. More than 16 groups are using M-Cube platforms for their research projects.
  • 07/2022. MobiSys’22 demo: in person demo for the software defined radar demo with M-Cube.
  • 07/2022. NSDI’23 paper: RF-Chord, Robust RFID Localization System for Practical Logistic Network.
  • 06/2021. Intern at MSR networking research group.
  • 03/2021. M-Cube is invited by ACM GetMobile.
  • 09/2020. M-Cube receives Best Paper Award of MobiCom’20 !
  • 09/2020. MobiCom’20 paper & demo: Give the presentation and demo for M-Cube.
  • 09/2020. We are working on distributing M-Cube platforms to other research groups. Please visit M-Cube website for more details.
  • 08/2020. SIGCOMM’20 talk: Give the presentation for NFC+. The first virtual event.
  • 06/2020. Intern at Alibaba Group.
  • 05/2020. SIGCOMM’20 paper: NFC+, long range magnetic RFID that defeats blockage.
  • 11/2019. MobiCom’20 paper: M-Cube, low cost Millimeter-Wave Massive MIMO Software Radio.
  • 10/2019. MobiCom’19 talk: Give the presentation for OFDMA backscatter. The first attended conference, very memorable. Los Cabos is a nice place and have met with many outstanding researchers.
  • 09/2019. Intern at Alibaba Group.
  • 10/2018. MobiCom’19 paper: OFDMA-backscatter high concurrency technique for backscattering. During undergraduate.
  • 09/2018. Begin to pursue Ph.D. at UC San Diego with Prof. Xinyu Zhang.


Note: ‘*’ marks co-primary authors.

  • Enabling OFDMA in Wi-Fi Backscatter
    Fengyuan Zhu, Renjie Zhao, Bingbing Wang, Xinbing Wang, Xinping Guan, Chenghu Zhou, and Xiaohua Tian
    IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking, 2023
    [ Paper Link ]

  • SlimWiFi: Ultra-Low-Power IoT Radio Architecture Enabled by Asymmetric Communication
    Renjie Zhao, Kejia Wang, Kai Zheng, Xinyu Zhang, and Leung Vincent 20th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation (NSDI), 2023 (46 out of 288 submissions, acceptance ratio: 16.0%)
    [ Full Paper: PDF ] [ Slides and video: NSDI’23 ]

  • RF-Chord: Towards Deployable RFID Localization System for Logistic Networks
    Bo Liang, Purui Wang, Renjie Zhao, Pengyu Zhang, Xinyu Zhang, Hongqiang Harry Liu and Chenren Xu
    20th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation (NSDI), 2023
    (50 out of 272 submissions, acceptance ratio: 18.4%)
    [ Full Paper: PDF ] [ Slides and video: NSDI’23 ]

  • M-CUBE: A Millimeter-Wave Massive MIMO Software Radio (Invited, Highlighted) Renjie Zhao, Timothy Woodford, Teng Wei, Kun Qian and Xinyu Zhang
    GetMobile: Mobile Computing and Communications, Volume 25, Issue 1, March 2021, pp 30-33
    [ Full Paper: PDF ]

  • NFC+: Breaking NFC Networking Limits through Resonance Engineering
    Renjie Zhao*, Purui Wang*, Yunfei Ma, Pengyu Zhang, Hongqiang Harry Liu, Xianshang Lin, Xinyu Zhang, Chenren Xu and Ming Zhang
    Annual conference of the ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communication on the applications, technologies, architectures, and protocols for computer communication (SIGCOMM), 2020
    (54 out of 250 submissions, acceptance ratio: 22%)
    [ Full Paper: PDF ] [ Slides: PPTX ] [ Video: Link ]

  • M-Cube: A Millimeter-Wave Massive MIMO Software Radio (Best Paper Award, 2/384) Renjie Zhao, Timothy Woodford, Teng Wei, Kun Qian and Xinyu Zhang
    ACM International Conference on Mobile Computing and Networking (MobiCom), 2020
    (62 out of 384 submissions, acceptance ratio: 16%)
    [ Full Paper: PDF ] [ Slides: PPTX ] [ Video: Link ]

  • OFDMA-Enabled Wi-Fi Backscatter
    Renjie Zhao, Fengyuan Zhu, Siyuan Peng, Yuda Feng, Xiaohua Tian, Hui Yu and Xinbing Wang
    ACM International Conference on Mobile Computing and Networking (MobiCom), 2019
    (55 out of 290 submissions, acceptance ratio: 19%)
    [ Full Paper: PDF ] [ Slides: PPTX ] [ Video: Link ]


  • CV.pdf (Last updated: 03/2024)