Swansea University reports that it will construct a new Center for Integrative Semiconductor Materials (CISM). The new state-of-the-art facility will bring together groundbreaking research with technology development in the field of semiconductor science and engineering. The planned research center follows the announcement of a £30 million capital investment by the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF).
At a UKRPIF showcase event in London, Chris Skidmore MP, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation at a UKRPIF announced that the planned research center will be built at the University’s Bay Campus. UKRPIF requires double-match funding from non-public sources such as businesses, charities, or philanthropic organizations and donors. So, CISM will also get support worth almost £60 million from major South Wales-based semiconductor companies in the CS Connected Cluster and 9 other industry partners.
The CISM is among eleven projects that are being funded through Round 6 of UKRPIF, totalling over £670m of new investment for UK research and innovation.
Public Funding includes £221m. Also, more than £450m of committed co-investment comes from businesses, charities, and philanthropic donors.
The CISM building, which is expected to be completed in the first half of 2021, will serve as a hub where manufacturing meets research and development. The center intends to pioneer new technologies and products, and it will grow and nurture the skills and talent to keep the UK semiconductor industry at the leading edge.
Swansea University academics will work with partners at Cardiff and other UK universities to support semiconductor industry growth by addressing their needs both now and in the future with innovative, application-driven research, and development.
CISM will also offer a range of services such as prototyping and process development, specialist analytical services, incubation, engagement, training, and provide access to the UK and EU innovation grants portfolio.
The three-story building will house a state-of-the-art clean fabrication environment, research laboratories, and office facilities. It will use sustainable, energy-efficient building methods and renewable energy technology including heat recovery and solar PV.
“The UK semiconductor industry is growing rapidly and is an emerging jewel-in-the-crown of British manufacturing. This UKRPIF funding will allow Swansea University to play our part in underpinning its continued development – driving innovation, providing capability, expertise and training,” said Professor Paul Meredith, Ser Cymru National Research Chair and Swansea University CISM project lead .
The CISM concept was jointly created by the Swansea University team in close collaboration with the regional industry in the CS Connected Cluster. Engineers from the partners helped design the proposed new facility, bringing state of the art industrial principles to the new building.
”This investment in CISM will help the Compound semiconductor cluster establish breakthrough technologies at the heart of the fourth industrial revolution . CS Connected has ambitious plans to place Wales and UK in the fast lane of the twenty first century,” added Sam Evans, Director of External Affairs of Newport Wafer Fab, UK’s largest semiconductor campus and a CS Connected partner.
“CISM is a genuine example of industry, universities and multiple levels of government coming together to support economic growth and job creation in an area of significant opportunity,” Kevin Crofton, Corporate Executive Vice President at Orbotech and President of SPTS Technologies, commented.