Northwestern Polytechnical University

Not to be confused with Northwestern Polytechnic University in Fremont, California, United States.
Northwestern Polytechnical University
Xīběi Gōngyè Dàxué
Motto 公诚勇毅
Motto in English
Loyalty, Integrity, Courage, and Perseverance
Type Public, Project 985, Project 211
Established 1938
President Wang Jinsong (汪劲松)
Academic staff
Undergraduates 14,395
Postgraduates 13,736
Location Xi'an, Shaanxi,  People's Republic of China
Campus Urban
0.8 km2 (Youyi Campus)
2.6 km2 (Chang'an Campus)
Newspaper 西北工大报
Colors Blue & Silver          
Nickname NWPU, NPU
Mascot Aoxiang
Website 中文 Eng

Northwestern Polytechnical University (also known as NPU or NWPU; Chinese: 西北工业大学; pinyin: Xīběi Gōngyè Dàxué; Russian: Северо-западный политехнический университет) is a National Key University, directed by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of the People's Republic of China, located in Xi'an, Shaanxi, China. The university emphasizes on the education and research in aeronautical, astronautical and marine engineering. As of 2012, NPU has 13,736 graduate students (3,063 full-time doctorate candidates, 7,087 master candidates, 3,586 professional degree candidates) and 14,395 undergraduate students. The University is a member of Project 985.[1]


The current NPU enjoys the legacy from its three major predecessors.[2]

Northwestern Engineering Institute

In 1938, due to the Japanese invasion in the northwestern China, many institutes were relocated to Shanxi. Among them, the National Beiyang Engineering Institute, the Engineering School of Beiping University, the Engineering School of the National Northeastern University, and the (private) Jiaozuo Engineering Institute were combined and formed the former National Northwestern Engineering Institute in Hanzhong, Shaanxi, which is a city surrounded by mountain range. After the World War II, the National Northwestern Engineering Institute, which is one of the three predecessors of the later NPU, was moved out of the mountains into the city of Xianyang in 1946. After the People's Republic of China founded, the National Northwestern Engineering Institute was renamed as the Northwestern Engineering Institute (because all the institute had become state-owned) in 1950.

Eastern China Aeronautics Institute

In 1952, due to the need of concentrated aeronautics research, the departments of aeronautical engineering of the former National Central University (later known as the Nanjing University), Jiaotong University and Zhejiang University are relocated to Nanjing and established the Eastern China Aeronautics Institute. This institute was relocated to Xi'an and renamed as the Xi'an Aeronautics Institute, which is the second predecessor of the later NPU, in 1956.

In 1957, the Northwestern Engineering Institute and the Xi'an Aeronautics Institute were merged to form the NPU, which concentrated its research in defense research in aeronautics, astronautics and marine engineering.

People's Liberation Army Military Engineering Institute

In 1970, due to the deteriorating relation with former USSR, the People's Liberation Army Military Engineering Institute, which was located in Harbin, was disassembled. Many of its departments were relocated from the city near China-Soviet border, among which, its Department of Aeronautical Engineering (the last predecessor of NWPU) is moved to Xi'an and merged into the NPU.


NPU's campuses comprises about 3.4 km2 within which the Youyi Campus, located in Beilin District, Xi'an, comprises about 0.8 km2 and the Chang'an Campus, located in Chang'an District, Xi'an, comprises about 2.6 km2.[3]

Youyi Campus

The Youyi Campus, often referred as the 'old campus', is divided into three parts: the South, the West and the North by the West Youyi Road and the South Laodong Road. The campus hosts education facilities, apartments of teachers and students, stadiums, logistics facilities, a kindergarten and the primary and middle school affiliated to NPU.[4]

Chang'an Campus

The Chang'an Campus, often referred as the 'new campus', is divided into two parts: the East and the West by the Dongxiang Road. This campus hosts many newly built administration buildings, school buildings, experiments facilities, sports facilities and so on. It serves as the main base for undergraduate education of NPU.[5]

Infrastructure development

NPU is building or going to build more facilities in both of these two campuses. Supported by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the former Commission for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense, NPU has received a 1.58 billion CNY (252.8 million USD) investment in infrastructure constructions from the central government and there're more than 20 construction projects running currently including the Material Science Building, the Innovation Science and Technology Building, the Reconstruction of Dangerous and Old Apartments after the Earthquake, the #1 Student Apartment in the Youyi Campus and the New Library, Infrastructure Plan I & II, the High-tech Experimental Research Center and others in the Chang'an Campus.[6]


NPU has a strong research capacity in engineering. It was confirmed as one of the National Key Universities by the State Council in 1960. In the 7th and 8th Five-year plan, NPU was listed as one of the 15 National Key Developing Universities. In the 9th Five-year plan, NPU joined the Project 211. And, in the 10th Five-year plan, NPU joined the Project 985.[7]

Since its establishment, NPU has educated more than 150,000 high level technicians and researchers for China's defense industry and national economy development. The first PhD from 6 disciplines in China was graduated from NPU.[8] And, among NPU's alumni, there are more than 30 fellows of the CAS and the CAE, 30 generals in PLA and 6 recipients of China's TOP 10 Outstanding Youth Elite.[9]


The university's research funding has been continually rising every year. It reached 1.67 billion RMB in 2010 (0.26 billion USD), ranking 5th among all universities in China with funding per faculty member ranked 1st. And, in 2011, it reached 1.91 billion RMB.[10]


In 2012, NPU ranked 4th in the Chinese university ranking, the most famous ranking in China, compiled by Wu Shulian. And, NPU's engineering ranked the 10th among China's engineering universities.[11]

According to the results of the 3rd Evaluation of Disciplines by the Ministry of Education of the People's Republic of China, the ranks of parts of NPU's disciplines are shown below.[12]

Discipline Rank
Material Science and Engineering 3
Aeronautical and Astronautical Science and Technology 3
Armament Science and Technology 3
Marine Science and Application 5
Dynamics 7
Computer Science and Technology 12
Mechanics Engineering 14
Control Science and Engineering 14
Transportation Engineering 15
Electronic Science and Engineering 17
Instrument Science and Technology 18
Power Engineering and Engineering Thermophysics 18
Information and Communication Engineering 20
Electrical Engineering 23
BiomedicalEngineering 23
Optical Engineering 24
Architecture 26
Mathematics 36
Chemistry 39
Civil Engineering 46
Business Administration 50
Foreign Languages and Literatures 52
Public Management 55
Applied Economics 58
Biology 64
Marxist Theory 69
Laws 72


NPU has 7 State Key Laboratories and 28 Province/Ministry-level Key Laboratories. Only the State Key Laboratories are listed below.[13]

Name Supporting School
State Key Laboratory of Solidification Processing School of Materials Science and Engineering
State Key Laboratory of Airfoil, Cascade Aerodynamics School of Aeronautics & School of Power and Energy
State Key Laboratory of Torpedo Guidance Technology School of Marine Technology
State Key Laboratory of Heat Structure and Inner Flow Field of Combustion of Solid Rocket Motor School of Astronautics
State Key Laboratory of UAV Special Technology Institute of National Defense
State Key Laboratory of Superhigh Temperature Structural Composite Materials School of Materials Science and Engineering
State Key Laboratory of Space Flight Dynamics Technology School of Astronautics


Education Experimental School

The Education Experimental School is the college with special honors in NPU. Its predecessor is the Education Reform Class established in 1985 which was upgraded to the current school in 2001. The aim of this school is to provide the most elite students of NPU with the best resources so that they can become future leaders in their fields.[14]

Academic schools

NPU has 15 academic schools, 1 educational experimental school, 1 independent school and some other administrative schools.[15] The university offers 58 undergraduate programs, 117 master programs, 67 doctorate programs and 14 postdoctoral programs. Currently, there are 2 First-level National Key Disciplines, 7 Second-level National Key Disciplines, 2 National Key (to cultivate) Disciplines, 21 First-level Disciplines for Doctorate Degree Granting and 31 First-level Disciplines for master's degree Granting. Additionally, NPU has 7 State Key Laboratories, 28 Province/Ministry-level Key Laboratories and 19 Province/Ministry-level Engineering Research Centers. The 15 academic schools of NPU are listed here in the official order.

  1. School of Aeronautics
  2. School of Astronautics
  3. School of Marine Science and Technology
  4. School of Materials Science and Engineering
  5. School of Mechanical Engineering
  6. School of Mechanics, Civil Engineering and Architecture
  7. School of Power and Energy
  8. School of Electronics and Information
  9. School of Automation
  10. School of Computer Science and Technology
  11. School of Science
  12. School of Management
  13. School of Humanities, Economics and Law
  14. School of Software and Microelectronics
  15. School of Life Science
  16. School of Foreign Languages

Other schools

Besides the 15 major academic schools and the education experimental school, NPU has other schools or institutes.[16] They are:

Student life

Innovation Study Base

The Innovation Study Base, directed by the Dean's Office of NPU, consists of multiple student competition programs including NPU's university team of Football Robotics, Dancing Robotics, Model United Nations, Mathematical Modeling, Model Airplanes and so on. In the 11th Five-year plan, NPU students won more than 1,400 awards at the international, state and provincial levels including 54 1st or 2nd place international level award and 147 1st or 2nd national level award.

Student Club Center

The Student Club Center, directed by the Communist Youth League of NPU, serves all university-level student clubs. The center helps to organize and supervise student activities on the campus and acts like a bridge between the administration and students' clubs.

Affiliated secondary school

Notable alumni


Coordinates: 34°14′28.51″N 108°54′54.22″E / 34.2412528°N 108.9150611°E / 34.2412528; 108.9150611

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