Renewable Capital to License Konarka's
Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell Technology
Relationship to focus on manufacturing scale-up in Europe and commercialization of
Konarka's dye cell technology
Lowell, Mass. and London, UK – July 31, 2006 – Konarka Technologies, Inc., an innovator in developing and commercializing Power Plastic™ that converts light to energy, and Renewable Capital Ltd, an investment firm that identifies and invests in renewable technologies, today announced the licensing and joint development of Konarka's dye-sensitized solar cell technology for large-scale production. The agreement will further the commercialization of Konarka's dye cell technology by bringing on large-scale production capabilities. Renewable Capital has committed resources, capital and equipment to their development activities. This includes the enlistment of services from Coatema, a world-renowned manufacturer of first-of-kind coating equipment.
"This is a key milestone in that Renewable Capital's investment validates the progress we have made in the development of high volume manufacturing methods for the dye sensitized process," commented Howard Berke, chairman and CEO for Konarka. "The non-exclusive relationship with Renewable Capital will enable for the large-scale manufacturing production and scale-up of Konarka's dye-sensitized solar cell technology. With this partnership, we are continuing to execute on our strategy to partner with leading global companies."
In 2002, Konarka was granted licensee rights to dye-sensitized solar cell technology from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL). As a result, Konarka leveraged its own intellectual property in conjunction with the EPFL license, to expedite the commercialization of its photovoltaic (PV) technology. The EPFL's dye-sensitized technology was developed by the world-renowned scientist, Dr. Michael Graetzel, and enables photovoltaic technology to create energy across a broad spectrum of light, both indoors and outdoors. Konarka significantly enhanced the technology and process development based on the company's own inventions and exclusive, worldwide licensing rights to proprietary processes that enable production at lower temperatures, serving as the foundation for extremely low manufacturing costs.
"Renewable Capital has assessed many technologies and opportunities around the world in renewable energy projects, forming strategic partnerships and negotiating licenses," commented Ed Stevenson, principal of Renewable Capital. "Clearly, Konarka's dye-sensitized solar cell technology has been developed to the point that it is ready to be manufactured on a large scale, and Coatema is just the equipment manufacturer to help us bring this to market."
Renewable Capital selected Coatema as its manufacturing partner due to its more than 30 years in the laminating and coating equipment industry. The company boasts the largest research and development center for coating and laminating in Europe.
"Our proven coating process can be leveraged for large-scale manufacturing of new materials, such as Konarka's dye cell technology," stated Thomas Kolbusch, managing director at Coatema. "As well, we provide complete control of the entire production process, from the development of the formulation, trials in our own lab, manufacturing of the plants and full support to the final product, thus ensuring the most optimum manufacturing conditions."
As part of the agreement, Renewable Capital will have ongoing access to Konarka's dye-cell technology, as it is developed. It anticipates the technology will scale to several hundred megawatts.
About Renewable Capital
Renewable Capital was formed by Ed Stevenson and Bob Hertzberg, who have 30+ years solar industry experience, for the purpose of investing in and commercializing start-up alternative energy companies. Renewable Capital has researched, negotiated and invested in renewable energy projects spanning wind, wave, electric vehicles and applied science. For more information on Renewable Capital, visit http://www.renewablecapital.co.uk/.
About Konarka Technologies, Inc.
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