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VIASPACE, Inc. (VSPC)
VIASPACE, Inc. (VSPC) is focused on growing renewable Giant King™ Grass as a low-carbon fuel for clean electricity generation and environmentally friendly energy pellets, as well as a feedstock for bio-methane production, green cellulosic biofuels, biochemical, and biomaterials. A high-yield, low-cost feedstock, Giant King Grass meets the cost targets of green energy applications while maintaining a carbon neutral profile.
The highest yielding biomass crop in the world, Giant King Grass can grow in a variety of soil conditions and does not compete with food crops. Once Giant King Grass is established, it can be harvested at 3-5 feet tall every 45 to 60 days or at 14 feet tall twice a year. This incredibly high rate of growth provides a continual supply of biomass year-round, enabling strategically located power plants to operate 24 hours a day regardless of the current season.
VIASPACE provides Giant King™ Grass seedlings and technical expertise to qualified projects. The company also plans to serve as a project developer or co-developer for power plant or pellet mill projects, together with local partners that have land and require electricity, heat, pellets, biogas, or biofuels. VIASPACE and its partners are capable of delivering an integrated Giant King Grass plantation and biomass power plant project in just 24 months.
The excellent energy characteristics of Giant King Grass and its ability to be harvested multiple times each year enable and energy output yield that is much higher than other crops . This superior feedstock offers material productivity benefits at remarkable costs for energy production, biofuels, and biomaterials. Giant King Grass is currently being grown in the United States, Virgin Islands, China, and other areas.
CEO, Chairman, Co-Founder - Dr. Carl Kukkonen
From its founding in 1998 Dr. Carl Kukkonen has led the VIASPACE team, serving as CEO of ViaSpace Technologies LLC, the predecessor of VIASPACE Inc., and serving as CEO and Chairman today. ViaSpace Technologies incubated several companies based on technologies developed at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and patents and software licensed from Caltech.
Prior to founding VIASPACE Dr. Kukkonen was a Caltech employee, serving as Director of the Center for Space Microelectronics Technology (CSMT) and Manager of Supercomputing at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. At JPL from 1984 to 1998 he managed several technologies and technical subsidiaries. Dr. Kukkonen established and grew the CSMT into a 250-person operation with a $70M annual budget.
From 1977 to 1984 Dr. Kukkonen worked for the Ford Motor Company as Ford's leading expert on hydrogen as an alternative automotive fuel. As a Principal Research Engineer, he also led a team that developed Ford's first turbocharged intercooled direct injection diesel engine. Dr. Kukkonen received a BS in physics from the University of California at Davis. He earned a MS and Ph.D. in physics from Cornell University and was a post-doctoral fellow at Purdue. In 1992 Dr. Kukkonen was awarded the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal.
CFO and Treasurer - Stephen J. Muzi
Mr. Stephen J. Muzi is responsible for all accounting, financial reporting, treasury and budgeting activities. He is also responsible for ensuring that proper internal financial controls exist and that procedures are in place to safeguard company assets. Mr. Muzi joined VIASPACE in 2000.
Prior to joining VIASPACE, Mr. Muzi was Corporate Controller of Southwest Water Company, a NASDAQ company with revenues in excess of $100 million. In this position, he was responsible for all SEC reporting requirements as well as Board of Director reporting. He managed the company's line of credit banking relationships, risk management program, internal audit program and income tax requirements. He also made presentations to investment brokers and analysts. Mr. Muzi was with Southwest Water Company from 1988 to 2000.
From 1985 to 1987, Mr. Muzi was a senior auditor with BDO Seidman, a national CPA firm. Mr. Muzi received his BS degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and an MBA from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He is a Certified Public Accountant.