On August 9, 2022, President Joe Biden signed the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) and Science Act, a $280 billion bipartisan initiative to onshore semiconductor manufacturing. The specific aims of the act include adding resilience to manufacturing supply chains, reducing dependence on foreign suppliers, and spurring domestic innovation, job creation, and workforce development. According to the Semiconductor Industry Association, the foundries established throughout the US will catalyze roughly 300,000 direct jobs, spurring about 1.7 million additional indirect jobs for the supply chain and related business.
As part of Penn's support of the national initiative in advanced semiconductor technologies and workforce development, Penn's multi-disciplinary center of excellence, the Singh Center for Nanotechnology, underpins various projects from advanced materials to energy to MEMS/NEMS to the life sciences to sensors and beyond. Its users span internal and external academia, industry and government labs, including students, researchers, and innovators, who are trained from the ground up among the over 100 interlocked tools housed across the 20,000+ square feet of class 100/1000 nanofabrication cleanroom, nanoscale characterization and scanning probe facilities. As part of the NSF National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI-2025608), the Singh Center catalyzes the growth in Philadelphia’s industry-dense and academically-rich environment and the surrounding mid-Atlantic region by providing access to state-of-the-art fabrication and characterization tools with staff expertise. It connects the mid-Atlantic cleanroom operational talent to the industries, fosters workforce development internship opportunities through its NNCI partnership with the Community College of Philadelphia, and continues to demonstrate leadership in various related activities.