VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA - April 15, 2010 - Natcore Technology Inc. (TSX-V: NXT; NTCXF.PK) ("Natcore" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has shipped sample wafers demonstrating the unique advantages of its Liquid Phase Deposition (LPD) process to potential customers in the solar industry.
At the request of four different international solar cell manufacturers, Natcore has sent sample wafers with anti-reflective coatings to the specific requirements requested by these potential customers. Natcore's room-temperature LPD process has been used to grow anti-reflective (AR) films on these wafers with the necessary thickness, uniformity and purity for customer applications.
In addition, Natcore's team at Nanotech West at the Ohio State University (OSU) has performed a series of process improvement experiments over the past three months, in anticipation of transferring the process to the "Natcore China" joint venture company. This is a very important step in the Company's plan, as it will allow the team in China to come quickly up to speed in exactly replicating the process developed at OSU.
Through these experiments, Natcore's scientists have confirmed that the within-wafer uniformity, wafer-to-wafer uniformity, and batch-to-batch wafer uniformity all exceed required levels. Moreover, testing has confirmed the consistent nature of the refractive index of the silicon dioxide-based films, as well as the excellent density, hardness and film-thickness control during growth from the LPD process.
Natcore's team has also developed a prototype engineering design for the scaled process at the Natcore China JV, and begun design of an automated, manufacturing-scale system. A full equipment and facility requirements listing has been developed, and projected costs for equipment, air handing, water requirements and electrical demand for the scaled process at the joint-venture are now being outlined.
"Our ability to show the scalability and consistency of our product wafers over a series of small-scale production batches allows us, for the first time, to meet the sample requests of potential end-users," notes Chuck Provini, Natcore's president and CEO. "In combination with our recent testing and development achievements at Ohio State, we continue to make major progress out of the laboratory and toward a production line."
The company is also pleased to report that its program at Rice University has achieved a significant milestone, having successfully manufactured silicon nanocrystals (quantum dots) of sufficient quality and suitable characteristics for use in its tandem solar cell research. This is an important advance toward the Company's goal of developing low-cost, super-efficient silicon cells with efficiencies of over 30%, or about twice the power output of today's most efficient mass-produced solar cells.
Natcore would also like to direct investor attention to the inaugural Pinnacle Digest Radio Show, which features CEO Chuck Provini and Prof. Andrew Barron commenting on the Company's recent accomplishments and exciting goals. The radio show can be accessed at no charge at PinnacleDigest.com.
On behalf of the Board of Directors,
President & Chief Executive Officer