U.S. Semiconductor Industry Ramps Up On New Research!

by Corey Switzer-Kruss
There’s cool news coming out of Silicon Valley this January for the semiconductor industry!
The SRC (Semiconductor Research Organization) and DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) have announced a $194MM initiative to focus on innovation for next generation electronics.
This program, called STARnet has provided an incredible amount of funding to Six academic research centers throughout the U.S. to explore new materials and atomic-scale structures to create more powerful and more energy-efficient semiconductor components.
The Universities receiving funding over the next five years are University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Michigan, Minnesota, Notre Dame, UCLA and UC Berkeley. Each university has been charged with different areas of research, with UCLA working on their FAME  (Functional Engineered Nano Architects) initiative.
According to the SRC website, FAME at UCLA will “create and investigate new non-conventional atomic scale engineered materials and structures of multi-function oxides, metals and semiconductors to accelerate innovation in analog, logic and memory devices for revolutionary impact on the semiconductor and defense industries.
I first learned of the STARnet program through the UCLA News website, and they’re very proud to be part of this cutting edge research initiative! Vice Chancellor for Research, James Economou, states, “UCLA has again been recognized as a leading hub for next-generation research ideas in nanotechnology and nanoelectronics”.
FAME will explore materials and structures beyond the traditional silicon with hopes that these materials will enable increased energy efficiency for computers, mobile phones and other electronics in the areas of memory or display screens.
At UCLA specifically, they will explore the interaction of electrons and atoms, develop advanced theory and models to guide material design, pioneer state-of-the-art techniques to achieve atomic precision in material synthesis; and integrate these multifunctional materials to revolutionize the semiconductor industries!