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2 September 2010


Founder to retire as chairman as Ascent enters manufacturing and commercialization

Ascent Solar Technologies Inc (ASTI) of Thornton, CO, USA, which manufactures flexible thin-film photovoltaic modules based on copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS), says that its chairman Dr Mohan Misra will retire from his position on the board of directors at the end of this year, at the age of 65, due to commitments to his family and other personal reasons. Replacing him as chairman will be current director Dr Amit Kumar.

Following a B.S. degree in Chemistry from Occidental College and joint studies at Stanford University and California Institute of Technology, Kumar received his Ph.D. in solar energy conversion devices from Caltech before completing a post-doctoral fellowship at Harvard University. As an entrepreneur, he has since built technology enterprises from start-up to public listing, and has also worked in venture capital with Oak Investment Partners and Acacia Research. Most recently, he was the CEO of NASDAQ-listed biotechnology firm CombiMatrix. As well as extensive strategic, financing, and business development experience, Kumar has strong contacts in both academia and the federal government.

“Ascent’s thin-film photovoltaic cells, on a light, flexible substrate have the potential to revolutionize and enable many solar energy applications,” says Kumar. “Our challenge is large-scale manufacturing, and we have assembled a tremendous team to take us into that phase and into commercialization,” he adds.

“Dr Kumar has been a tremendous contributor to Ascent, and I am pleased that he will increase his involvement by taking on the chairmanship,” says Misra. “Ascent is entering a new phase of its development, as indicated by the beginning of our manufacturing expansion activities. Our plant is running and we are working on expanding capacity, improving cost metrics, and delivering product,” he adds.

“Dr Misra founded Ascent and guided the company through our early years. He has been instrumental in the development of our revolutionary flexible, thin-film technology,” comments president & CEO Dr Farhad Moghadam. “We are pleased that he will continue to be an advisor to me and the company in an unofficial role.”

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