Photo of Gang Tan

Gang Tan

Associate Professor


  • School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
  • Computer Science and Engineering

W358 Westgate Building


Personal or Departmental Website

Research Areas:

Interest Areas:

Software security, programming languages, computer security, software engineering, formal methods, program verification.




  • BE, Computer Science, Tsinghua University, 1999
  • Ph D, Computer Science, Princeton University, 2005


Journal Articles

  • Gang Tan, 2015, "JNI light: an operational model for the core JNI", Mathematical Structures in Computer Science, 25, (4), pp. 805–840
  • Siliang Li and Gang Tan, 2014, "Exception analysis in the Java Native Interface", Science of Computer Programming, 89, pp. 273–297
  • Mengtao Sun, Gang Tan, Joseph Siefers, Bin Zeng and Greg Morrisett, 2013, "Bringing Java’s wild native world under control", ACM Transactions on Information Systems and Security, 16, (3), pp. 9:1–9:28
  • Edward Kim, Xiaolei Huang and Gang Tan, 2011, "Markup SVG - An Online Content-Aware Image Abstraction and Annotation Tool", IEEE Transactions on Multimedia, 13, (5), pp. 993–1006
  • Gang Tan, Zhong Shao, Xinyu Feng and Hongxu Cai, 2011, "Weak updates and separation logic", New Generation Compting, 29, (1), pp. 3–29
  • Amal Ahmed, Andrew Appel, Chris Richards, Kedar Swadi, Gang Tan and Daniel Wang, 2010, "Semantic Foundations for Typed-Assembly Languages", ACM Transactions on Programming Languages and Systems, 32, (3), pp. 1-67

Conference Proceedings

  • Gang Tan and Greg Morrisett, 2016, "Bidirectional Grammars for Machine-Code Decoding and Encoding", pp. 73–89
  • Divya Muthukumaran, Nirupama Talele, Trent R Jaeger and Gang Tan, 2015, "Producing Hook Placements to Enforce Expected Access ControlPolicies"
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2015, "Per-Input Control-Flow Integrity", pp. 914–926
  • Vinod Ganapathy, Trent R Jaeger, Christian Skalka and Gang Tan, 2014, "Assurance for Defense-in-Depth via Retrofitting"
  • Siliang Li and Gang Tan, 2014, "Finding Reference-Counting Errors in Python/C Programs with Affine Analysis"
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2014, "Modular Control Flow Integrity", pp. 577–587
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2014, "RockJIT: Securing Just-In-Time Compilation Using Modular Control-Flow Integrity", pp. 1317–1328
  • Mengtao Sun and Gang Tan, 2014, "Nativeguard: Protecting android applications from third-party native libraries", pp. 165–176
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2013, "Efficient user-space information flow control", pp. 131–142
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2013, "Monitor Integrity Protection with Space Efficiency and Separate Compilation"
  • Bin Zeng, Gang Tan and Ulfar Erlingsson, 2013, "Strato: A Retargetable Framework for Low-Level Inlined-Reference Monitors", pp. 369–382
  • Ben Niu and Gang Tan, 2012, "Enforcing User-Space Privilege Separation with Declarative Architectures", pp. 9–20
  • Siliang Li, David Yu Liu and Gang Tan, 2012, "JATO: Native Code Atomicity for Java", pp. 2–17
  • Mengtao Sun and Gang Tan, 2012, "JVM-Portable Sandboxing of Java’s Native Libraries", pp. 842–858
  • Greg Morrisett, Gang Tan, Joseph Tassarotti, Jean-Baptiste Tristan and Edward Gan, 2012, "RockSalt: Better, Faster, Stronger SFI for the x86", pp. 395–404
  • Bin Zeng, Gang Tan and Greg Morrisett, 2011, "Combining control-flow integrity and static analysis for efficient and validated data sandboxing", pp. 29–40
  • Siliang Li and Gang Tan, 2011, "JET: Exception checking in the Java Native Interface", pp. 345–358
  • Gang Tan, 2010, "JNI Light: An Operational Model for the Core JNI", pp. 114–130
  • Joseph Siefers, Gang Tan and Greg Morrisett, 2010, "Robusta: Taming the Native Beast of the JVM", pp. 201–211
  • Siliang Li and Gang Tan, 2009, "Finding bugs in exceptional situations of JNI programs", pp. 442–452
  • Gang Tan, Zhong Shao, Xinyu Feng and Hongxu Cai, 2009, "Weak updates and separation logic", pp. 178–193
  • Gang Tan and Jason Croft, 2008, "An empirical security study of the native code in the JDK", pp. 365–377
  • Gang Tan and Greg Morrisett, 2007, "ILEA: Inter-Language Analysis across Java and C", pp. 39–56
  • Gang Tan and Andrew Appel, 2006, "A Compositional Logic for Control Flow.", SPRINGER, SPADDRESS, 3855, pp. 80–94
  • Gang Tan, Andrew Appel, Srimat Chakradhar, Anand Raghunathan, Srivaths Ravi and Daniel Wang, 2006, "Safe Java Native Interface", pp. 97–106
  • Gang Tan, Andrew Appel, Kedar Swadi and Dinghao Wu, 2004, "Construction of a Semantic Model for a Typed Assembly Language", SPRINGER, SPADDRESS, 2937, pp. 30–43
  • Xinming Ou, Gang Tan, Yitzhak Mandelbaum and David Walker, 2004, "Dynamic Typing with Dependent Types.", pp. 437–450
  • Gang Tan, Xinming Ou and David Walker, 2003, "Enforcing Resource Usage Protocols via Scoped Methods."

Technical Reports

  • Gang Tan, 2010, "JNI Light: An Operational Model for the Core JNI (Technical Report)"

Research Projects

  • January 2016 - August 2018, "TWC: Medium: Collaborative: Retrofitting Software for Defense-in-Depth," (Sponsor: National Science Foundation).
  • January 2016 - December 2017, "CAREER: User-Space Protection Domains for Compositional Information Security," (Sponsor: National Science Foundation).

Honors and Awards

  • James F. Will Career Development Professorship, Penn State, January 2016 - December 2018
  • NSF CAREER Award, National Science Foundation, January 2012 - December 2017


Service to Penn State:

  • Member, Curriculum Committee, August 2016
  • Member, Faculty search committee, August 2016
  • Member, Engineering Faculty Council, August 2016
  • Member, Institute for CyberScience Coordinating committee, August 2016

Service to External Organizations:

  • Reviewer, Midterm review for one faculty member at U. of Minesota, February 2016 - March 2016



The School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science was created in the spring of 2015 to allow greater access to courses offered by both departments for undergraduate and graduate students in exciting collaborative research in fields.

We offer B.S. degrees in electrical engineering, computer science, computer engineering and data science and graduate degrees (master's degrees and Ph.D.'s) in electrical engineering and computer science and engineering. EECS focuses on the convergence of technologies and disciplines to meet today’s industrial demands.

School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

The Pennsylvania State University

209 Electrical Engineering West

University Park, PA 16802


Department of Computer Science and Engineering


Department of Electrical Engineering