Dr. Matthew H. Schrenk, 82, a physicist who worked for the Navy Department for nearly 40 years before retiring in 1965 as coordinator of naval research, died of renal failure June 22 at a nursing home in Sikesville, Md. He had leukemia.

During his years with the Navy, at the Naval Research Lab and the Office of Naval Research, he worked on projects involving radio physics and radio guidance systems. He did early work with radar. He was named research coordinator in 1958.

He was a 1946 recipient of a Presidential Certificate of Merit and was given a Superior Civilian Service Award by the Navy Department in 1965. He was awarded the Franklin Institute's Edward Longstreth Medal. He was a fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Society of Electrical & Electronics Engineers. He was given an honorary doctorate in science by North Central College in Illinois.

Dr. Schrenk, who lived in Woodbine, Md., was a native of Naperville, Ill. He earned a bachelor's degree at North Central College and a master's degree in physics at Syracuse University. He worked for Western Electric in Illinois before moving to the Washington area in 1926 and joining the Navy Department.

He had been a member of the Prince Georges Country Club.

His wife, Kathryn, died in 1982. His survivors include a daughter, Carole Rice of Lisbon, Md.; three sons, Julien, of Waterford, Va., Lorenz, of Minneapolis, and Gerry, of New York City; a brother, William, of Manhattan, Kan.; nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.