Zhichao Cao Ph.D
Office: Room 3224, Engineering Building, 428 S. Shaw Lane, East Lansing, MI 48824
Email: caozc at msu dot edu


I'm currently an assistant professor at Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Michigan State University. As an assistant professor, I worked in School of Software, Tsinghua University. I received my Ph.D. degree in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering of Hong Kong University of Scienc and Technology. I received my B.E. degree in the Department of Computer Science and Technology of Tsinghua University. My research interests lie broadly in IoT systems, edge computing and mobile computing. Currently, I serve as Associate Editor for ACM Transactions on Sensor Networks (TOSN), which is the flag journal related to computational intelligence in IoT networks.


  • [Service] Invited to be a TPC member of EAI MobiQuitous 2022.
  • [Award] Elevated to IEEE Senior Member and ACM Senior Member.
  • [Service] Invited to be a TPC member of IEEE INFOCOM 2023.
  • [Award] Chenning Li won the Travel Grants of NSDI 2022 and INFOCOM 2022. Congratulation to Chenning.
  • [Mobile Security] Our paper "NEC: Speaker Selective Cancellation via Neural Enhanced Ultrasound Shadowing" is accepted by IEEE/IFIP DSN 2022.
  • [AI+Sensing] We will organize the 1st Wireless AI Perception (WAIP) workshop at CVPR 2022. Welcome to participate!
  • [Networking] Our paper "CurvingLoRa to Boost LoRa Network Capacity via Concurrent Transmission" is accpted by USENIX NSDI 2022.
  • [ML System] Our paper "PyramidFL: A Fine-grained Client Selection Framework for Efficient Federated Learning" is accepted by ACM MobiCom 2022.
  • [Networking] Our paper "CurveALOHA: Non-linear Chirps Enabled High Throughput Random Channel Access for LoRa" is accepted by IEEE INFOCOM 2022.
  • [Award] Our paper "NELoRa: Towards Ultra-low SNR LoRa Communication with Neural-enhanced Demodulation" won the Best Paper Award of ACM Sensys 2021.
Our EIN research group consists of 8 PhD candidates with diverse undergraduate backgrounds. We focus on broad networking optimization and computational intelligence topics we have met during developing and implementing various edge and IoT systems.
Research Projects:
  • FedIoT: Efficient and Scalable Federated Learning systems for IoT. (2021 - Present)
  • FarmEye: A large-scale agriclture data collection and analysis system with LoRa and AI. (2021 - Present)
  • DeepSensing: Deep Neural Network augmented RF sensing systems. (2020 - Present)
  • MobileSEC: Mobile system security and privacy ralted to cameras and microphones. (2020 - Present)
  • IndoorSys: Practical systems for localization, tracking, and 3D model construction in indoor environments with mobile devices and RF infrastrucutres. (2019 - Present)
  • LoSee: A wide-area vehicle tracking system with LoRa. (2018 - 2020)
  • BatteryLink: A product-cycle management system for lead batteries. (2016 - 2019)
  • OilNet: A high speed mesh back-bone network for wild oil fields. (2014 - 2016)
  • CitySee: A long-term city-wide urban sensing system for Carbon balance evaluation and environmental surveillance. (2012 - 2014)
  • GreenOrbs: A long-term kilo-scale wireless sensor network system in the vast forest. (2009 - 2012)

I am recruting motivated PhD students who share the same research interests with us.

Surveys, Tutorials and Books

  • Chenning Li, and Zhichao Cao.
    LoRa Networking Techniques for Large-scale and Long-term IoT: A Down-to-top Survey. ACM Computing Survey (CSUR) 55(3):52, (2022).
  • Chenning Li, Zhichao Cao, and Yunhao Liu.
    Deep AI Enabled Ubiquitous Wireless Sensing: A Survey. ACM Computing Survey (CSUR) 54(2):32, (2021).
  • Zhipeng Song, Zhichao Cao, Zhenjiang Li, Jiliang Wang, and Yunhao Liu.
    Inertial Motion Tracking on Mobile and Wearable Devices: Recent Advancements and Challenges. Tsinghua Science and Technology 26(5):692-705, (2021).

Selected Publications [Full List]

    Wireless Sensing

  • Chenning Li, Manni Liu, and Zhichao Cao.
    WiHF: Gesture and User Recognition with Wi-Fi. TMC 21(2):757-768, (2022).
  • Chenning Li, Zheng Liu, Yuguang Yao, Zhichao Cao, Mi Zhang, and Yunhao Liu.
    Wi-Fi See It All: Generative Adversarial Network-augmented Versatile Wi-Fi Imaging. Sensys 2020.
  • Wireless Networking/Communication

  • Chenning Li, Xiuzhen Guo, Longfei Shangguan, Zhichao Cao, and Kyle Jamieson.
    CurvingLoRa to Boost LoRa Network Throughput via Concurrent Transmission. NSDI 2022.
  • Chenning Li, Hanqing Guo, Shuai Tong, Xiao Zeng, Zhichao Cao, Mi Zhang, Qiben Yan, Li Xiao, Jiliang Wang, and Yunhao Liu.
    NELoRa: Towards Ultra-low SNR LoRa Communication with Neural-enhanced Demodulation. Sensys 2021. (Best Paper Award)
  • Li Liu, Yuguang Yao, Zhichao Cao, and Mi Zhang.
    DeepLoRa: Learning Accurate Path Loss Model for Long Distance Links in LPWAN. INFOCOM 2021.
  • ML/Edge System

  • Chenning Li, Xiao Zeng, Mi Zhang, and Zhichao Cao.
    PyramidFL: A Fine-grained Client Selection Framework for Efficient Federated Learning. MobiCom 2022.
  • Mobile Security/Application

  • Jialuo Du, Chenning Li, Zhenge Guo, and Zhichao Cao.
    SRPeek: Super Resolution Enabled Screen Peeking via COTS Smartphone. ICPADS 2021.
  • Manni Liu, Jialuo Du, Qing Zhou, Zhichao Cao, and Yunhao Liu.
    EyeLoc: Smartphone Vision Enabled Plug-n-play Indoor Localization in Large Shopping Malls. IoTJ 8(7):5585-5598, (2021).
  • Lingkun Li, Manni Liu, Yuguang Yao, Fan Dang, Zhichao Cao, and Yunhao Liu.
    Patronus: Preventing Unauthorized Speech Recordings with Support for Selective Unscrambling. Sensys 2020.


  • Fall 2020/Spring 2021, CSE-220, Programming in C
  • Spring 2020/Fall 2021, CSE-891, AIoT: Artificial Intelligence in the Edge

Codes and Datasets

  • L2 Implementation in TinyOS.
  • Chase Implementation in TinyOS.
  • NELoRa codes and datasets.
  • CurvingLoRa codes and datasets.
  • PyramidFL codes and datasets.
  • WiSIA: Wi-Fi imagings datasets.


"Nothing endures but change."

- Heraclitus, Greek philosopher (540 BC - 480 BC)