Natcore Technology, a New Jersey company known for its work on black silicon, has brought on an Italian solar company executive as a technical advisor.
Dr. Daniele Margodanna is the chief technology officer for MX Group SpA in Italy and is now part of an official advisory board for Natcore.
He has extensive technical knowledge and is familiar not only with developing new solar photovoltaic products, but also with commercializing them.
“He’s forgotten more about the solar industry than we ever knew,” said Natcore CEO Chuck Provini.
When Margodanna first discovered Natcore, he came out for a presentation.
“I was making my pitch,” Provini said. “And I give a pretty good presentation – talking about doubling efficiencies and all that.”
When Provini finished, Margodanna asked about cell-to-module loss.
“We had no idea what that was,” Provini said.
Concentrating on making more efficient solar cells, Provini said Natcore leaders had not thought to consider what would happen when the cell became part of a solar module. Margodanna can help Natcore scientists think of issues and solve problems they didn’t realize existed. Having that extra insight will help guide the company down the path to commercialization, Provini said.
“A chain is only as strong as its weakest link,” Provini said.
Bringing Margodanna on as a consultant will help the company avoid releasing anything prematurely, something to be mindful about as the company approaches market readiness with its prototype machine and perfects its black silicon process.
Provini said the company will rely on Margodanna in the coming months to guide the company toward commercialization with its current product, but hopes he will also be able to help in developing other technologies Natcore hopes to work on after completing the black silicon project. The company has patented a unique liquid-phase deposition technology that could have thousands of applications in the solar photovoltaic world.
Provini said Natcore is not paying Margodanna, but is instead offering him stock in exchange for his help and is also working with MX Solar.