UK solar farm developer aims at the US with technology deal

July 20, 2017 // By Nick Flaherty
A PSECC solar farm being developed in Ghana
A US technology firm has had to turn to a UK developer of solar farms to take on the US market.

PSECC in Chichester, UK, is working with Natcore Technology of Rochester, NY, to develop solar projects within the United States.

"PSECC has solar and energy projects around the world, but we feel that the United States is an underserviced and untapped market," said Alan Brewer, CEO of PSECC. "We feel strongly that Natcore is the right company to help us expand that market.  Clean energy is important, not just to countries but to the planet."

PSECC has expertise in site identification, design, finance and engineering as well as procurement and construction (EPC) services for solar farms and projects. It is currently developing solar farms in Konza, Kenya; Mombasa, Kenya; and Simbrofo, Ghana and will use funding from European banks for the US projects. 

"We've been looking for American partners to help us plant our technology here on our own soil," said Chuck Provini, president and CEO of Natcore. "We have knocked on many doors in this county, but it appears that no one is home in the US when it comes to solar, regardless of the administration. We find it ironic that we've had to go to Europe to make it happen."

The deal with Natcore will provide PSECC with access to Natcore's technology, including some level of exclusivity once that technology becomes commercially available. Natcore researchers recently achieved an efficiency of 20.7% in their latest demonstration solar cell using Natcore Foil Cell, an all-back-contact cell that combines a new laser process with a novel metallization strategy. This eliminates the need for silver, one of the highest-cost components of a conventional solar cell. As Natcore is not a panel manufacturer, it can source components from a wide range of vendors to use in the process.

Initially the companies' joint efforts will be concentrated in US states that have feed-in tariffs, such as California, Florida, Hawaii, Maine, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

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