William R. Cherry Award

2014 William R. Cherry Awardee: Ronald A. Sinton

Ronald A. Sinton is founder and president of Sinton Instruments, based in Boulder, Colorado. Ron received his PhD in Applied Physics from Stanford University in 1987, following a B.S. in Engineering Physics from the University of Colorado in 1981. His studies at Stanford University included the demonstration of 28%-efficient silicon concentrator solar cells, the physics of high-injection solar cells, detailed device modeling, measurements of Auger recombination, and the test and measurement of concentrator solar cells. As a Research Associate at Stanford, Ron developed simplified versions of the sophisticated point-contact solar cell designs that could maintain the high efficiency while minimizing the process complexity. He continued this work during the early years of SunPower Corporation, focusing on solar cell designs and manufacturing processes potentially suitable for commercialization.

Dr. Sinton founded Sinton Consulting in 1992. The company soon focused on the development of novel test and measurement instruments. This work resulted in many fruitful, and very international, collaborations and research papers. Innovations from Sinton Instruments that have become standard within the R&D community and the silicon manufacturing industry include the QSSPC lifetime technique, Suns-Voc measurements, and novel methodologies for measuring the efficiency of high-efficiency solar cells and modules.

Dr. Sinton has maintained his special interest in the device physics of silicon solar cells. Running a metrology company has proven to be an effective way to be at the center of both of the R&D and manufacturing communities, offering opportunities to contribute at the most technical academic level as well as providing instrumentation to support tens of GWs of silicon solar cell and module production.

Ron received the R&D 500 award in 2005 for developing instruments for measuring bulk lifetime in silicon ingots and bricks. He is well published and has coauthored 4 book chapters. He is an associate editor of the IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics and has frequently presented tutorials on silicon solar cells and device physics at the IEEE PVSC conferences, first in 1988 and as recently as 2013. Ron is a frequent contributor to conference program committees; especially the IEEE PVSC, the NREL Silicon Workshop, and the SiliconPV conference.

Nomination Deadline: January 31, 2014 (nominations are closed)

About the Award

This award is named in honor of William R. Cherry, a founder of the photovoltaic community. In the 1950's, he was instrumental in establishing solar cells as the ideal power source for space satellites and for recognizing, advocating, and nurturing the use of photovoltaic systems for terrestrial applications. The William R. Cherry award was instituted in l980, shortly after his death. The purpose of the award is to recognize an individual engineer or scientist who devoted a part of their professional life to the advancement of the science and technology of photovoltaic energy conversion. The nominee must have made significant contributions to the science and/or technology of PV energy conversion, with dissemination by substantial publications and presentations. Professional society activities, promotional and/or organizational efforts and achievements are not considerations in the election for the award.

Award Package

The award consists of a plaque, monetary award, recognition at the PVSC Opening Ceremony and a dedicated Cherry Award Talk during the Opening Ceremony. In addition, a reception is held in honor of the Cherry Award winner during the PVSC.

Rules & Eligibility

  • Nominee must be a scientist or engineer who has made significant contributions to the science and/or technology of PV energy conversion, with dissemination by substantial publications and presentations.
  • Nominees are not required to be members of IEEE or EDS.
  • Nominees from any country and institution are eligible.
  • Nominees are expected to have prior contributions to the PVSC.
  • Previous recipients of the Cherry Award are not eligible.
  • Self-nominations will not be accepted.
  • A nomination will remain active for 3 award cycles, after which a new nomination may be submitted.

Nomination Package Requirements

  • Complete Electronic Nomination Form with name of nominee, and his/her current affiliation and contact information.
  • Nominator's name, address, phone number and e-mail address.
  • A rationale (less than 150 words) of the nominee's contributions to the advancement of the PV field.
  • A citation (less that 40 words) listing the nominee's specific contributions to make them deserving of the award.
  • A list of the nominee's activities in the field.
  • A current CV for the nominee.

Questions? Contact the Cherry Committee Awards Chair [email protected]



BJ Stanbery, Cherry Committee Chair
HelioVolt Corporation

Jerry M. Olson, Award Chair
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

David Wilt, Award Co-Chair
U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory

Robert J. Walters, Award Co-Chair
Naval Research Laboratory

Tim Anderson
University of Florida

Charles Backus
ASU Research Park

Sheila G. Bailey
NASA Glenn Research Center

Allen M. Barnett
University of New South Wales

Paul Basore
Hanwha Solar America

John Benner

Henry W. Brandhorst, Jr.
Auburn University

David E. Carlson
BP Solar

Timothy Coutts
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Keith Emery
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Dennis J. Flood
North Coast Initiatives Ltd.

Americo F. Forestieri
MOE Consulting

Martin A. Green
University of New South Wales

Lawrence L. Kazmerski
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Richard R. King
Spectrolab, Inc.

Sarah Kurtz
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

John D. Meakin
University of Delaware

Jerry Olson
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Ryne Raffaelle
Rochester Institute of Technology

Eugene Ralph
PV consulting

Ajeet Rohatgi
Georgia Institute of Technology

Richard J. Schwartz
Purdue University

Richard M. Swanson
SunPower Corporation

Stuart Wenham
University of South Wales

Christopher R. Wronski
Pennsylvania State University

Masafumi Yamaguchi
Toyota Technical Institute

Previous Recipients

Dr. Paul Rappaport 1980

Dr. Joseph L. Loferski 1981

Prof. Martin Wolf 1982

Dr. Henry W. Brandhors
t 1984

Mr. Eugene L. Ralph

Dr. Charles E. Backus

Dr. David E. Carlson 1988

Dr. Martin A. Green 1990

Mr. Peter A. Iles 1991

Dr. Lawrence L. Kazmerski 1993

Prof. Yoshihiro Hamakawa

Dr. Allen M. Barnett

Dr. Adolf Goetzberger

Dr. Richard J. Schwartz 1998

Dr. Christopher R. Wronski 2000

Dr. Richard M. Swanson 2002

Dr. Ajeet Rohatgi 2003

Dr. Timothy J. Coutts

Dr. Antonio Luque

Dr. Masafumi Yamaguchi

Dr. Stuart Wenham 2009

Dr. Richard R. King 2010

Dr. Jerry M. Olson 2011

Dr. Sarah Kurtz 2012

Dr. Keith Emery 2013