Natcore Technology Inc.

Natcore Technology Inc.

July 13, 2010 05:00 ET

Natcore Achieves Key Breakthrough Toward Bridging Economic Gap Between Solar and Conventional Power

First-Ever Encapsulization of Silicon Quantum Dots Holds Promise for Creation of Super-Efficient Solar Cells

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - July 13, 2010) - Natcore Technology Inc. (TSX VENTURE:NXT)(PINK SHEETS:NTCXF) is pleased to announce that its research program at Rice University, under the direction of Prof. Andrew Barron, has successfully encapsulated silicon quantum dots with a uniform coating of silicon dioxide.

This represents a crucial milestone in the Company's development of an all-silicon, super-efficient tandem solar cell. To the knowledge of the company and its scientists, such an encapsulization of individual silicon nanocrystals, or quantum dots (QDs), in silicon dioxide has never before been accomplished.

The accompanying photograph shows a silicon quantum dot encapsulated in silicon dioxide by Prof. Barron and his team (

The silicon dioxide coating was achieved using Rice University's patented liquid phase deposition (LPD) process, to which Natcore has an exclusive, worldwide license. As a result of this unprecedented accomplishment, Natcore can now work toward the construction of multiple layers of silicon QDs in orderly, three dimensional arrays that could more-efficiently absorb shorter wavelength light (i.e., higher-energy photons) than is possible in ordinary bulk silicon.

When added to the top of a standard silicon solar cell, such stacked arrays could significantly increase the efficiency of the silicon solar cell at a much lower cost per additional watt than that of the original cell itself. Theoretical calculations by various independent research groups and published in the open literature show that efficiencies of over 30% for tandem solar cells in terrestrial sunlight are possible.

Efficiencies of greater than 30% would represent approximately double the power output of today's commercial silicon solar cells, and would likely bridge the economic gap between solar and conventional power generation.

Tandem solar cells are a proven technology currently employed in space applications. The major issue preventing their broad use in earth-based applications has been the need to use exotic semiconducting materials for the upper layers, and the expensive, special vacuum processing technology that limits large-scale production.

In contrast, Natcore's LPD technology eliminates the need for such materials, along with their costly processing, and promises to usher in a new period of unprecedented growth in the application of solar cells for electrical power generation.

Chuck Provini, Natcore's president and CEO, notes, "This is a key achievement toward our goal of a super-efficient solar cell. By encapsulating the QDs in silicon dioxide, we hope to be able to stack them, much like ping-pong balls in a box. The resulting array promises to make a silicon tandem cell possible. We are now working diligently and aggressively toward that goal."

Mr. Provini's views are echoed by Natcore's chairman, Brien Lundin: "This breakthrough is testimony to the abilities of Prof. Barron and his team, as well as the versatility of our LPD process. These fundamental achievements could revolutionize not only solar technology, but many other important applications and industries as well."

On behalf of the Board of Directors,

Charles Provini, President and Chief Executive Officer

Statements in this press release other than purely historical factual information, including statements relating to revenues or profits, or the Company's future plans and objectives, or expected sales, cash flows, and capital expenditures constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions and are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties inherent in the Company's business, including risks inherent in the technology history. There can be no assurance that such forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on such statements. Except in accordance with applicable securities laws, the Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements or forward-looking statements that are incorporated by reference herein.

About Natcore Technology Inc.

Natcore Technology is the exclusive licensee, from Rice University, of a thin-film growth technology enabling room-temperature growth of various silicon oxides on silicon wafers in a liquid phase deposition (LPD) process. Although the implications of this discovery for semiconductors and fiber optics are significant and wide-ranging, the technology has immediate and compelling applications in the solar sector. Specifically, the Company's LPD process could enable silicon solar cell manufacturers to significantly reduce manufacturing costs and increase throughput, and has the potential to allow, for the first time, mass manufacturing of super-efficient (30%+) tandem solar cells with double the power output of today's most efficient devices.

Having been independently tested and verified by one of the world's most respected science and technology laboratories, Natcore's technology is now in the process of being commercialized. Our goal: to make stand-alone solar energy competitive with conventional power generation.

This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy any of the securities in the United States.  The securities have not been and will not be registered under the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended ("the U.S. Securities Act") or any state securities law and may not be offered or sold in the United States or to U.S. Persons unless registered under the U.S. Securities Act and applicable state securities laws or an exemption from such registration is available

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

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