From WeiShui He to St-Laurent River, 25 years of hot summers and cold winters, I feel from time to time that you come to my aid and sit with me when I am down and facing troubles. From the Bank of Yellow River to Chesapeake Bay, 25 years of warm springs and golden falls, I feel again and again that you come to me in memory when I am reaping the rewards that you have bestowed upon me. One cannot possibly imagine the magnitude of your influence on me, from your Inspiration to my Innovation.
In my Ph.D thesis from McGill University, I wrote: “I would like to express my gratitude to Professor Yaohe Zhou, who introduced me to the research field of crystal growth and material solidification”. Expanding more than a decade, from the first simple crystal growth apparatus to the one with fully computer-controlled video imaging system, from the flow effects on solidification front to the instability and non-linearity of crystal growth, from the constrained dendritic, eutectic growth to the rapidly directional solidifying cellular pattern formation, from metal alloys to protein bio-crystals, you guided Weidong and me, and continued your legend through Shan and Xiangdong in visualizing and exploring the growth patterns and dynamics. We contributed to the basic ingredients for the currently accepted solidification theory, three of our papers appeared among two-hundred articles selected from thousands for the sunset of Dendrite research in 1995*.
During the “The Fundamentals of Solidification” course for graduate students, you passed onto me the principles of thermal/mass/momentum transfer, the creative thinking, the experimental skills, and later even your research style. Like the table lamp you gave me on my wedding day, you are the guiding light that led me to discover my later breakthroughs: the ACS award for the morphological modeling on structure formation in polymer solidification in 1998; the CJCh.E. best paper award on the correction to Flory’s polymer thermodynamics theory in 2002; my recent inventions of DuPont Chesapeake and PolyAP technology for the massive production of polymer nanofibers.
Here, Josh Groban’s song expresses me deeply from heart:
You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.
（Tao Huang,March 17, 2007, DuPont Experimental Station）