Originally used to upgrade the attack value on Legendary Armor during Year 1, they has since been phased out of use in favor of other material systems. It is still currently required to level of Year 1 Vault of Glass Armor, and can be obtained from the Vault itself, or purchased from The Speaker with Ascendant Energy.
In Destiny 2, Ascendant Shards were reintroduced as an Exotic material used to Masterwork Legendary Armor. They are acquired from challenging activities such as Nightfall: The Ordeal Strikes, Trials of Osiris, or bought from Banshee-44.
List of appearances