Public Release: 

UC Davis partners in new photonics manufacturing institute

University of California - Davis

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IMAGE: This is an example of photonics technology. This optical chip, developed by Prof. Ben Yoo and colleagues at UC Davis, can convert light pulses to electronic signals at many times... view more

Credit: Ryan Scott, UC Davis

UC Davis is a partner in new $610 million institute for photonics manufacturing innovation announced July 27 by Vice President Joe Biden at an event in Greece, N.Y.

The Integrated Photonics Institute for Manufacturing Innovation (IP-IMI) aims to stimulate new investment and industrial growth based on photonics technology, which uses light, rather than electrons, to carry information. Integrated photonics has the potential to pack more processing power onto a single chip, opening new possibilities in computing, telecommunications and related fields.

"I am very excited that our campus is part of this new national manufacturing institute," said Professor S. J. Ben Yoo, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, who is leading the UC Davis team. "UC Davis is a strong partner in the Integrated Photonics Institute thanks to the very generous support of Chancellor Katehi and the campus, as well as the technology progress we have been making at UC Davis."

The new institute is led by the Research Foundation of the State University of New York (RF SUNY) and headquartered in Rochester, N.Y. The consortium includes 55 companies and 20 universities, as well as community colleges and non-profit organizations. UC Davis and UC Santa Barbara are major partners on the West Coast.

The Center for Nano and Micro Manufacturing (CNM2) at the UC Davis College of Engineering will play a major role in the West Coast hub of the Institute. The Center includes a 10,000 square foot Class 100 clean room with tools for microscale manufacturing, as well as research space and microscope facilities. Chancellor Linda Katehi has directed that $6.5 million allocated to the Center be used to support UC Davis' role in the manufacturing institute.

Total funding comprises $110 million in federal funds (Department of Defense) and $500 million in non-federal funds, including $250 million from the state of New York and $40 million from the California Governor's Office of Economic Development (GO-Biz).

The Integrated Photonics Institute for Manufacturing Innovation is the sixth of nine such public-private partnerships established by the White House to boost advanced manufacturing and foster American innovation.

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