Universal Joins ASIC, Effort to Fuel America’s Advanced Semiconductor Development


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Universal Instruments is now a member of the recently formed American Semiconductor Innovation Coalition (ASIC). Comprised of more than 90 businesses, startups, universities, national labs, and nonprofits, ASIC’s mission is to deliver focused research and development to The National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC) and The National Advanced Packaging Manufacturing Program (NAPMP). The 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA or CHIPS Act) called for the creation of the NSTC and NAPMP to establish a pathway for investment to accelerate the U.S. transformation into a secure semiconductor powerhouse.

“Semiconductors have become a fundamental part of our everyday lives and the recent pandemic and geopolitical uncertainty have shown them to be a critical element of our supply chain that must be protected and nurtured by applying the latest innovations and technology,” said Universal Instruments Vice President of Marketing, Glenn Farris. “Joining ASIC will help us to advance this goal.”

As the only semiconductor equipment packaging company member manufacturing high-precision, high-volume production systems, Universal brings a unique perspective to ASIC. “We look forward to sharing our knowledge of the manufacturing technologies required for efficient, cost-effective semiconductor packaging with the other member companies, as well as learning from these companies to collectively drive towards our goals,” stated Farris.

Earlier this year, ASIC announced its formal intent to advocate with one voice for the NSTC and NAPMP, following the Coalition’s response to the Department of Commerce Request for Information (RFI) 2022-01305. The key principles in the response outline critical aspects to bolster a robust domestic semiconductor supply chain that is achievable, scalable, and sustainable.

“Decades of disinvestment in our domestic semiconductor industry have made us more reliant than ever on supply from other countries to meet our nation’s chip demand. There is no more time to waste — for the U.S. to remain competitive on the global stage, we must make bold investments in chip R&D, packaging, and manufacturing,” said Dr. Douglas Grose, ASIC spokesperson and past president of NY CREATES, the organization that operates the Albany Nanotech Complex, the most advanced semiconductor R&D facility in the U.S., and where the headquarters for the NSTC and NAPMP could be located. Dr. Grose added, “ASIC is a well-rounded coalition with members that are leading drivers of chip innovation and ready to hit the ground running to fuel America’s semiconductor resurgence.” 

Farris sees the New York-based facility as a powerful local asset. “Having the NSTC hub right here in our backyard in New York and being able to build a foundation for growth that can be expanded nationally would be a great opportunity and privilege,” said Farris. “The focus of the NSTC and NAPMP will be to help better move technologies from the lab to operational systems in the US, bridging the prototyping and scaling gap that currently exists and strengthening the entire domestic ecosystem.”

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