In a move intended to make the company the worldwide leader in organic photovoltaics, Konarka Technologies, Inc. a developer of of flexible, polymer and nanoparticle-based photovoltaic (PV) technology, has acquired Quantum Solar Energy Linz (QSEL), based in Linz, Austria, from Linz AG, the regional utility company.Lowell, Massachusetts & Linz, Austria – February 11, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] The company has been re-named Konarka Austria Forschungs- u. EntwicklungsgesmbH (Forschungs- u. Entwicklungs is translated as Research and Development). “We consider organic solar cell technology as a complement to our dye-based solar cell nanotechnology and are confident that organic PV will be a commercial success,” said Konarka CEO Dr. William Beckenbaugh. “One of the essential attributes of this technology is its compatibility with Konarka’s expertise in roll-to-roll manufacturing and low-cost processing. The organic PV technology also opens the door for a hybrid solar cell, for which we have already applied for patent rights, that combines the advantages of our nanocrystalline titanium dioxide with conducting polymers.” “This acquisition is further evidence of our commitment and determination to be the market leader in third generation, flexible, low-cost photovoltaics,” said Howard Berke, Konarka’s chairman and co-founder. “Our commercialization roadmap for the polymer technology includes new applications and form factors to serve our customers with the most appropriate technology for their applications.” Konarka Austria Forschungs- u. EntwicklungsgesmbH has benefited from a close working relationship with the Linz Institute for Organic Solar Cells (LIOS), established by Dr. N. Serdar Sariciftci at Johannes Kepler University, who is regarded as one of the top scientists worldwide in the field of conducting polymers as applied to photovoltaics. He studied with Nobel Laureate Dr. Alan Heeger at the University of California Santa Barbara, where he and Dr. Heeger were co-inventors of technology related to conducting polymers. As a result of the acquisition, Linz AG has become a shareholder in Konarka Technologies, Inc. Dr. N. Serdar Sariciftci has become a member of Konarka’s Scientific Advisory Board.