IBM, Intel group to invest $4.4 billion in chip tech

A group led by IBM and Intel will invest $4.4 billion into a region that is already bristling with chip manufacturing and R&D activity.

The upstate New York area has become a major hub for chip manufacturing and R&D. A large chipmaking facility is now being completed by Globalfoundries there
The upstate New York area has become a major hub for chip manufacturing and R&D. A large chipmaking facility is now being completed by Globalfoundries there. Globalfoundries

A group of semiconductor heavyweights led by Intel, IBM, and Globalfoundries will invest $4.4 billion in a New York-based chip R&D hub, New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said today.

The five-year investment will target upstate New York, which is already a major center of chip research and development activity tied to IBM and Globalfoundries. The latter--Advanced Micro Devices' erstwhile chipmaking arm now owned by Abu Dhabi-based ATIC--is in the process of completing a massive manufacturing complex to make 28-nanometer chips in the town of Malta, NY. IBM has had manufacturing and R&D facilities in the region for many years.

The money will flow to two projects. The first project, led by IBM, will focus on making the next two generations of computer chips, Cuomo's office said in a statement.

The second project, which is a joint effort by Intel, IBM, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC), Globalfoundries and Samsung, will focus on moving existing 300mm wafer manufacturing technology to more advanced 450mm tech.

450mm wafers yield roughly twice the number of chips as today's 300mm wafers, which lowers the cost of making future chips.

The investment is expected to result in the creation and retention of approximately 6,900 jobs, Cuomo said. That number includes 2,500 additional high-technology positions at CNSE Albany NanoTech Complex, IBM Yorktown Heights and IBM East Fishkill, SUNY Institute of Technology (SUNYIT) in Utica, and CNSE's Smart System Technology & Commercialization Center in Canandaigua.

"This investment will have other beneficial economic impacts...The project will include a private 'Made in NY' initiative to support the potential purchase of $400 million in certain tools and equipment from companies around New York State to create, attract, and retain manufacturers and suppliers across the state," Cuomo said.

No private company will receive any state funds as part of the agreement, Cuomo's office said. To support the project, New York State will invest $400 million in the SUNY College for Nanoscale and Science Engineering (CNSE) in Albany, including $100 million for energy efficiency and low cost energy allowances.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.


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