Manufacturing consortium to focus on high-tech power electronics

Obama announces $140 million project at NC State; universities, companies to partner on research and development

01/16/2014


President Obama went to Raleigh, N.C. on Jan. 15 to announce creation of a new $140 million manufacturing consortium that would include private manufacturers and universities focused on developing high-tech power electronics.

Reuters reported that the president took a swipe at Congress for not funding an expansion of such technology centers around the country. “"I don't want the next big job creating discovery, the research and technology, to be in Germany or China or Japan; I want it to be right here in the United States of America," Obama was quoted as saying. "Where I can act on my own I'm going to do so, and today I'm here to act," he said. "Manufacturing is a bright spot in this economy."

The consortium will be lead by North Carolina State University, where Obama visited in announcing the program and which has been a leader in both developing manufacturing innovation and working with regional manufacturing leaders to develop a strong tie between education and the manufacturing sector.

The other universities and technical labs include North Carolina, Arizona State, Florida State University, University of California at Santa Barbara, Virginia Tech and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

The 18 companies that have signed on to participate include both global manufacturing leaders and smaller regional high-tech companies. They include: ABB, APEI, Avogy, Cree, Delphi, Delta Products, DfR Solutions, Gridbridge, Hesse Mechantronics, II-VI, IQE, John Deere, Monolith Semiconductor, RF Micro Devices, Toshiba International, Transphorm, USCi and Vacon. The State of North Carolina also is a partner in the program.

The manufacturers and the state will contribute $70 million over the next five years with a matching grant coming from the U.S. Department of Energy.

“President Obama has declared 2014 a year of action, and while he will continue to work with Congress on new measures to create jobs and grow the economy, he will also use his executive authority to get things done,” the White House said in a press release. “After shedding jobs for a decade, our manufacturers have added 568,000 over the past nearly four years, including 80,000 over the past five months.  Manufacturing production has grown since the end of the recession at its fastest pace in over a decade. The President is committed to building on that progress.”

The ultimate goal of the group is the creation of new semiconductor chips and devices that can handle the increased demand for power management. “The institute will also pair chip designers and manufacturers with large power electronic manufacturers and suppliers, such as John Deere and Delphi, to bring these technologies to market faster and will offer training, higher education programs and hands-on internships that give American workers the skills for new job opportunities and meet the needs of this emerging and globally competitive industry,” the press release said.



No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Learn how to create value with re-use; gain productivity with lean automation and connectivity, and optimize panel design and construction.
Go deep: Automation tackles offshore oil challenges; Ethernet advice; Wireless robotics; Product exclusives; Digital edition exclusives
Lost in the gray scale? How to get effective HMIs; Best practices: Integrate old and new wireless systems; Smart software, networks; Service provider certifications
Fixing PID: Part 2: Tweaking controller strategy; Machine safety networks; Salary survey and career advice; Smart I/O architecture; Product exclusives
The Ask Control Engineering blog covers all aspects of automation, including motors, drives, sensors, motion control, machine control, and embedded systems.
Look at the basics of industrial wireless technologies, wireless concepts, wireless standards, and wireless best practices with Daniel E. Capano of Diversified Technical Services Inc.
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
This is a blog from the trenches – written by engineers who are implementing and upgrading control systems every day across every industry.
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Case Study Database

Case Study Database

Get more exposure for your case study by uploading it to the Control Engineering case study database, where end-users can identify relevant solutions and explore what the experts are doing to effectively implement a variety of technology and productivity related projects.

These case studies provide examples of how knowledgeable solution providers have used technology, processes and people to create effective and successful implementations in real-world situations. Case studies can be completed by filling out a simple online form where you can outline the project title, abstract, and full story in 1500 words or less; upload photos, videos and a logo.

Click here to visit the Case Study Database and upload your case study.