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Consortium seeks to ramp nanoelectronics research

Posted by iNext - 2005-12-11

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Seeking to accelerate nanoelectronics research in the United States, a consortium of companies has announced its first research grants under the Semiconductor Industry Association's new Nanoelectronics Research Initiative (NRI).

The grants will fund the creation of two new university-based nanoelectronics research centers — one in California and the other in New York. The grants will also support additional research at five National Science Foundation (NSF) nanoscience centers and at a research group in Texas.

The industry consortium, an SRC subsidiary known as the Nanoelectronics Research Corp. (NERC) and NSF, also announced a total of $2 million in supplemental grants for nanoelectronics research during 2006 at five existing NSF nanoscience centers.

In August 2005, a consortium of six companies chartered an SRC subsidiary, the Nanoelectronics Research Corp., to develop and administer a university-based research program to explore new areas in nanoscale electronics. The goal of this research program — the Nanoelectronics Research Initiative — is to demonstrate novel computing devices with critical dimensions below 10-nm.

The companies participating in NRI — Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Freescale Semiconductor Inc., IBM Corp., Intel Corp.; Micron Technology, Inc.; and Texas Instruments Inc. — will assign researchers to collaborate with the university teams.

The first new research center is called the Western Institute of Nanoelectronics (WIN). Headquartered at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, WIN participants will come from three University of California campuses — including Los Angeles, Berkeley, and Santa Barbara — as well as Stanford University.

WIN will focus on novel spintronics and plasmonic devices. In addition to its NRI funding, this center will also receive additional direct support from Intel and the UC Discovery program.

The other center is called the Institute for Nanoelectronics Discovery and Exploration (INDEX). Headquartered at the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering of the State University of New York-Albany (SUNY-Albany), it will include also the Georgia Institute of Technology, Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Purdue University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Yale University.

INDEX will focus on developing nanomaterial systems; atomic-scale fabrication technologies; predictive modeling protocols for devices, subsystems and systems; power dissipation management designs, and realistic architectural integration schemes for realizing novel magnetic and molecular quantum devices.

INDEX will also receive additional direct funding from IBM, and support from New York State is expected.

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