Martin F. Melhus

Martin F. Melhus, PhD

  • Assistant Professor

Affiliated Programs


  • PhD, Physics (2011)
    Northwestern University (IL)
  • MS, Physics (2011)
    Northwestern University (IL)
  • MS, Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering (1999)
    Illinois Institute of Technology (IL)
  • BS, Physics (1985)
    University of Chicago (IL)

About Me

Physics is best understood at a deep level. Simply learning how to solve problems enables one to take tests successfully, but not to apply physics to real-world situations. I strive to develop an understanding of the principles of physics; once these are mastered, solving problems becomes a natural extension of applying these principles to a particular situation.

Research Interests

My research interests are in nonlinear phenomena such as granular materials.


  • Melhus, M., Aranson, I.: Effect of vibration on solid-to-liquid transition in small granular systems under shear. Granular Matter DOI 10.1007/s10035-012-0314-7 (2012).
  • Melhus, M., Aranson, I., Volfson, D., Tsimring, L.: Effect of noise on solid-to-liquid transition in small granular systems under shear. Phys. Rev. E 80, 041305-7 (2009).

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

American Physical Society


  • SGA Faculty Member of the Year (2015)
    Midwestern State University


  • Widener Hosts AAPT Members for Fall Meeting, Physics Faculty Share Research

    Widener University’s Physics Department hosted members the Southeast Pennsylvania Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) on campus for their fall 2023 meeting. 

    Organized by Assistant Professor of Physics Alice Du, the event was full of guest speakers and presentations covering topics such as student engagement, professional development for teachers, and hot topics in the physics industry. Martin Melhus, assistant professor of physics, presented “Numerical Integration of Trajectories at a Student Level.”

    The AAPT hosted an additional event in collaboration with the Delaware Valley Amateur Astronomers in which Paul Baker, assistant professor of physics, shared work he completed as a member of the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) and the International Pulsar Timing Array (IPTA). 

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