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News Release
Hillsboro Seeks to Establish Oregon Semiconductor Center of Innovation Excellence Following Grant Award from Business Oregon - 09/16/22

A planning grant from Business Oregon will allow the City of Hillsboro to continue working with key partners – Oregon State University (OSU), Intel, and the Oregon Business Council – to establish the Oregon Semiconductor Center of Innovation Excellence. 

Hillsboro is one of seven recipients of Business Oregon’s grants, which are part of the Oregon’s 10-Year Innovation Plan, which aim to develop statewide centers that will support growth and development within industry sectors where Oregon has a competitive advantage.

“As a national center of semiconductor innovation, Hillsboro and Oregon are already home to one of the world’s leading clusters of semiconductor makers,” said Dan Dias, Economic & Community Development Director for the City of Hillsboro.  “With perhaps the world’s top concentration of leading talent and expertise, it makes sense to work together to develop a pragmatic, academic, and industry-led applied research and development program to grow and maintain this advantage well into the future.”

Hillsboro’s Semiconductor Center of Innovation Excellence will engage stakeholders from across Oregon to foster academic, industry, and government cooperation around innovation and research. The goal of this work is to lead to commercialization pathways that will promote and stimulate economic growth and job creation. 

National Science Foundation Regional Engines Initiative 

The Center of Innovation Excellence is one of several innovation efforts underway in Hillsboro, where the City is also partnering with Oregon State University to apply for a grant from the National Science Foundation Regional Engines Initiative. The grant concept is to form a collaborative partnership in the Pacific Northwest focusing on semiconductor materials research, development, and implementation; advanced lithographic techniques; novel device architectures and fabrication processes; and development of new tooling and advanced testing. 

Additional partners in this effort include the University of Oregon, the University of Washington, Boise State University, and the Oregon Semiconductor Competitiveness Task Force

Anchored by Intel, Hillsboro has experienced a steady increase of semiconductor equipment suppliers and manufacturers who continue to expand and create jobs at diverse skill and education levels. 

“Hillsboro has a distinct opportunity to further develop and foster applied research,” said City of Hillsboro Mayor Steve Callaway. “Scaling of entrepreneurial and start up projects, and talent training is incredibly important for the equitable distribution of prosperity for all who live in the region.”

National Semiconductor Technology Center Hub

At the federal level, Oregon is in the hunt to be designated as one of the National Semiconductor Technology Center hubs. Each National Semiconductor Technology Center hub will focus on a specialized leading-edge technology that will advance the competitiveness of the semiconductor industry.  

Oregon partners envision an Advanced Lithography Center to be located in Oregon and funded under the National Semiconductor Technology Center. If successful, regional location of an advanced lithography-focused National Semiconductor Technology Center hub would draw billions of dollars of federal investments to Oregon, as well as serving to significantly increase the level of industry interest and investment here. 

These hubs will be a beehive of research and development activity and collaboration with industry partners from around the country and globe. The Oregon Delegation, led by Senator Wyden, Congresswomen Bonamici, and Senator Merkley, are deeply committed to bringing this important National Semiconductor Technology Center Hub to Oregon. The impact of the Hub will result in new job creation, billions of dollars of new investment, as well as national and international recognition of Oregon’s superior semiconductor technology and workforce capabilities. 

These initiatives will collectively function to raise Oregon’s already elevated status in the global semiconductor ecosystem.

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