There are four key items needed to create a resilient semiconductor ecosystem and to help boost U.S. competitiveness.
In order to fully utilize the National Semiconductor Technology Center, MITRE Engenuity and its Semiconductor Alliance identified several factors to make sure the investment becomes a long-term resource for semiconductor development in the U.S., according to a paper released on Tuesday.
As noted in the paper, MITRE and the Semiconductor Alliance found that, in order to establish a resilient semiconductor ecosystem and improve U.S. competitiveness, it is necessary to have:
- Effective and inclusive governance.
- An ambitious and high-impact technology agenda.
- A robust network with an effective operating model for executing technical agendas.
- Diversified income streams that include state and local resources as well as private investments.
“The strategic competition with China is a long game on a complex technology playing field. Securing semiconductor chip manufacturing, and ensuring the U.S. and our democratic allies lead the chips of the future, is an important way to create resilience against supply chain compromise and denial,” said Laurie Giandomenico, vice president and chief acceleration officer at MITRE. “Our role is to help balance industry objectives with national security interests, and that means CHIPS investments must build a sustaining national resource.”
According to the paper, it is important to establish a progressive semiconductor technology agenda supported by a “Breakthrough Challenge” program to generate “high impact wins while stimulating a diverse ecosystem.” Additionally, the NSTC should stimulate innovation and support research and development efforts, for example, developing ancillary technology to help solve challenges like reducing data center power consumption or incorporating chiplets into a single platform for better performance. Furthermore, the NSTC should establish a network connected with an efficient operating model by using existing facilities and capabilities, as well as building strategic partnerships and new capabilities to enable innovation and reduce barriers.
“To gain and maintain the lead in the race for global semiconductor leadership, the U.S. needs to approach the NSTC with a long-term strategy,” said Raj Jammy, chief technologist at MITRE Engenuity and executive director of the Semiconductor Alliance. “Our paper lays out the blueprint for how the Department of Commerce can establish an enduring national resource that will help revitalize the domestic semiconductor industry, protect American national and economic security, create jobs and re-establish American industry leadership.”
The suggestions come just after the National Institute of Standards and Technology announced the first funding opportunities for CHIPS for America funding on Tuesday.
The paper added that with approximately $11 billion set aside for NSTC efforts, it could “run out quite quickly if spent judiciously,” so it will be important to provide value for participants and diversify its value stream to ensure long-term financial sustainability.
Accordingly, the themes of stewardship, inclusivity and ambition “underpin” the recommendations for the NSTC.