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About Maxout Renewables

Maxout Renewables develops products and technologies that drive down costs and raise efficiency. We are focused on manufacturing products that will help solar power compete head-to-head with coal and other cheap energy sources.

Dr. Eric Cummings, President/CEO

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The Maxout team is led by Dr. Eric Cummings, who founded Cool Earth Solar and invented the LCOE-optimized PV-plant power suite that includes the innovative balancer, having worked on this critical system problem extensively for three years.  Dr. Cummings has a true insider’s view of the cost structures and electronics needs of utility-scale PV and CPV power plants, which guides and constrains Maxout’s products.  His core expertise is finding inventive solutions to heavily constrained problems. 

Previously, Dr. Cummings worked as a Principal Scientist at Sandia National Laboratories in Micro and Nanofluidics and founded LabSmith, Inc., a laboratory equipment company he founded and bootstrapped.  He conceived, designed, coded, and supported LabSmith’s novel electronic products, learning how to reduce risk, speed time-to-market, and add product value over time via firmware updates and how to implement powerful control algorithms in simple microcontrollers, two capabilities that Maxout will use extensively.  Eric earned his Ph.D. in Aeronautics and Chemistry from Caltech in 1995, earning the prestigious Clauser prize for “opening new avenues of human endeavor and thought” for his thesis, which created a new laser diagnostic technique.  He is holder of 21 issued and 9 pending patents, including 4 issued for Maxout specific technologies.



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Kurt Kuhlmann, CTO

Kurt leads Maxout's technology development.  As the founder of Meridian Design and D-Rev Specialties, Kurt's product design and commercialization background and track record of bringing innovative products to market help position Maxout as a technology leader.  Kurt holds a bachelor's degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a master's degree from University of Massachusetts-Amherst in radar and microwave design.



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Kirsten Pace, COO and Founder

Kirsten Pace brings product design and operations management expertise to Maxout.  Kirsten was one of the founders of Cool Earth Solar, and is currently CEO of LabSmith, a leading microfluidics technology company.  Kirsten holds a MS in Mechanical Engineering from Penn State University.

Maxout Advisory Team

Maxout's advisors include leading innovators and dedicated and tenacious technical staff.

Prof. Keyue Smedley, Advisor and Collaborator: Prof. Keyue Smedley, who has collaborated with Maxout in the Balancer development, is a leading pioneer in power electronics and director the power electronics laboratory of University of California Irvine.  Prof. Keyue Smedley is an expert’s expert in all aspects of power electronics, especially switch-timing control methodologies, efficient power architectures, active and passive soft-switching, interleaving, and realistic simulation.  Prof. Smedley has invented a regenerative snubber for flyback circuits that provides up to 7% efficiency boost.  She will help us to reconcile our SPICE models with experiment, refine our snubber circuitry, optimize the efficient-operating envelope, and assist with control algorithms.

Dr. Greg Smedley, Advisor and Collaborator: Dr. Greg Smedley has also collaborated in the Maxout Balancer development.  He is founder and CEO of One-Cycle Control, Inc., a power-electronics company that has developed a wide range of innovative power modules and systems, including a light-weight, 40 kW, rack-mount inverter, an agile var generator, motor controllers, and an award-winning power mobile power module for the army.  He also co-founded iinovations, Inc., and taught design at Caltech. Holding 3 issued and 7 pending patents, Dr. Smedley is an expert in creative system and module design, circuit protection, certification, and high-power electronics. He will help us prepare for certifications and UL-testing, refine designs, conceive control strategies, and resolve thermal issues. 

Howard R. Mullin, Manufacturing Consultant: Howard's manufacturing expertise has be instrumental in the cost-effective design of the Maxout Balancer housing. Howard is an expert at creating material intensive solutions that minimize labor – during manufacturing and throughout the life of the product. He is founder and CEO of Control Plastics, an injection molding and machining product design and manufacturing company. He specializes in working with engineers and designers to improve designs for manufacturing and function as well as helping with material selection and assembly techniques.

Jim Diestel, Marketing and Business Development Consultant: Jim is an accomplished marketing and business development executive with broad international experience. He has formed and recruited marketing teams in North America, China, and Europe and negotiated business partnerships in the US, China, Korea, Indonesia, Germany, Brazil, Japan, France, Israel, and the UK delivering hundreds millions in annual revenue for start-ups and Fortune1000 firms. He has an undergraduate degree from the University of California, Berkeley and an MBA from California State University. An accomplished and sought after public speaker, Jim has presented at seminars and conferences worldwide. He is motivated by the challenge of generating profitable revenue streams through positive marketing campaigns. Jim has been an independent marketing and business development consultant since 2009.