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About Kwan H Cheng

Dr. Cheng's teaching interests cover a vast range. In his career at Texas Tech prior to coming to Trinity, he taught virtually every course in the undergraduate and graduate physics curriculum. He currently has a large grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the effectiveness of different physics lab pedagogies. He is particularly excited about teaching Biophysics at Trinity, and is actively engaged with students from many departments in mentoring class projects. One of his future goals is to teach astronomy lab!
Dr. Cheng's current research is focused on understanding the underlying physical mechanisms that cause neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's. He has a powerful computing cluster at Trinity, and has been awarded large amounts of supercomputer time, to run molecular dynamics simulations. He is currently preparing to set up a single molecule spectroscopy laboratory in the new Center for Sciences and Innovation. He has engaged numerous students and faculty in collaborations on campus, in San Antonio, at Texas Teach, and elsewhere.


Present Williams Professor, Physics and Astronomy, Trinity University Department of Physics and Astronomy

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Honors and Awards

  • Advisory Board Member of Freeman Co. and Saplings Co. , 2013
  • Appointed Williams Endowed Chair in Interdisciplinary Physics by Trinity University, 2011
  • Faculty Advisory Panel in the Office of Vice President for Research at Texas Tech, 2009
  • Research Development Advisory Panel in the Office of Vice President for Research at Texas Tech, 2008
  • SPIE-Fluorescence Detection IV Key-note speaker, 1996
  • NIH-NCI 5-year R21 First Independent Research Support and Transition (FIRST) Award for research in studying the molecular mechanisms of heat inactivation of Calcium Transport Membrane Proteins particularly the protective role of membrane cholesterol, 1989
  • American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship (PI) for research in studying the in-vivo aggregation kinetics of human complement C5b-8 membrane complex on cell membranes, 1984


  • General Physics 1 & II
  • Introductory and Intermediate Physics Lab
  • Biophysics
  • Quantum Physics I

Articles (72)