Robert W. Birkmire

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Robert W. Birkmire is the director of the Institute of Energy Conversion, a United States Department of Energy Center of Excellence for Photovoltaic Research and Education, as well as Professor of Materials Science and Engineering with a secondary appointment as Professor of Physics.

He has been principal investigator on numerous government programs sponsored by DOE, DARPA, NASA, DOD, NIST for research on amorphous and polycrystalline thin film solar cells and crystalline Si solar cells. This research has also been supported by BP Solar, DuPont, GE Energy, Global Solar, Konarka, Ascent Solar, SoloPower, and Telio Solar.

Dr. Birkmire advises undergraduate and graduate students from the departments of Chemical, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, Physics & Astronomy, and Materials Science and Engineering. His current research efforts are growth and characterization of thin film semiconductors for photovoltaic and opto-electronic devices and the relationship of the growth process to film properties and device performance. He is actively involved in developing effective mechanisms to transfer laboratory results to commercial processes with particular emphasis on implementing model-based process control schemes using advanced sensor technologies.

Dr. Birkmire is author of over 200 technical publications and is inventor on eight U.S. patents and has served on numerous program and organizing committees for international conferences. He Associate Editor of Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Energy and Environment and is on the Editorial Board of Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells.

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