Arizona Commerce Authority Allocates Funding To Arizona State University To Expand Semiconductor Research In Tempe

ASU will expand advanced manufacturing capabilities with a $17.5 million investment from the ACA


TEMPE, AZ (December 21, 2023) – The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) today announced a $17.5 million investment in Arizona State University (ASU) to expand Arizona’s advanced semiconductor manufacturing capabilities. The expansion will enhance Arizona’s fan-out wafer-level packaging R&D and workforce training capabilities and drive the creation of a GaN (gallium nitride) manufacturing and research ecosystem in the state to enable technology of the future.

ASU will allocate the funding to purchase equipment to enhance the capabilities of ASU’s MacroTechnology Works (MTW) in Tempe. ASU plans to expand advanced packaging and GaN research to additional capabilities that support 6G, IoT, machine learning and more. The expansion will also include workforce development initiatives such as internships and university joint research, and next-gen GaN research development for 6G in partnership with NXP Semiconductors in Chandler.

“The expansion of ASU’s MacroTechnology Works is another important step in enhancing Arizona’s semiconductor ecosystem,” said Governor Katie Hobbs. “These new capabilities enable first-of-its-kind training and R&D opportunities to strengthen the state’s workforce and support continued industry growth.”

"Today’s announcement represents another important step in ASU's commitment as a university to contribute to advancing America’s domestic semiconductor manufacturing, research and development capabilities,“ said ASU President Michael Crow. “Our recent creation of a Microelectronics Workforce Development Hub and our strategic focus on the university’s MacroTechnology Works facility are both in place to assist with achieving the objectives outlined today and we look forward to working with the Arizona Commerce Authority and NXP to drive success at an accelerated rate.”

“This new investment showcases Arizona’s continued commitment to advancing our semiconductor industry,” said Sandra Watson, President and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority. “We’re proud to support ASU with this exciting expansion, which will expand the state’s semiconductor supply chain and workforce development efforts while building on strategic efforts to establish an advanced packaging ecosystem in Arizona.”

“We are excited for the opportunity to collaborate with ASU, helping train and develop the engineers of the future, who could one day contribute to the development of critical communications infrastructure benefitting both the state of Arizona and U.S. as a whole,” said Jim Norling, Vice President of Product Management, Radio Power, NXP Semiconductors. “This partnership will drive innovation in 6G, taking lab concepts through joint research to full-scale manufacturing.”

The expanded capabilities at MTW in Tempe will support future growth opportunities within Arizona’s semiconductor ecosystem. The ASU expansion also builds on Arizona’s efforts to establish shared semiconductor research and manufacturing facilities that complement federal investments through the CHIPS program.

The ACA’s investment is part of a $100 million commitment announced last year to increase semiconductor and microelectronics development in the state. In July, ASU, Applied Materials, Inc, and the ACA announced plans to create a world-class shared research, development and prototyping facility, the Materials-to-Fab (MTF) Center in the university’s MacroTechnology Works building at ASU Research Park. The MTF Center, which is supported by a $30 million investment from the Arizona Commerce Authority, will be home to Applied Materials’ Center of Excellence in materials deposition technology.


In November, the University of Arizona and the ACA announced an expansion of the University’s Micro/Nano Fabrication Center (MNFC) in Tucson. The MNFC is a cleanroom facility which supports manufacturing and research efforts involving semiconductors, computer chips, optical devices and quantum computing systems. The MNFC expansion, which is supported by a $35.5 million investment from the ACA, will also include additional training efforts to continue growing the state’s skilled workforce.

In September, the Department of Defense announced that Arizona was one of eight regional hubs selected under the Department of Defense Microelectronics Comms program. The Southwest Advanced Prototyping (SWAP) Hub proposal was led by ASU. The SWAP Hub was awarded $39.8 million to advance microelectronics research and development in the focus areas of Artificial Intelligence Hardware, 5G/6G, and Commercial Leap Ahead Technologies. The Hub will help create a GaN and Advanced packaging and test ecosystem in Arizona by offering lab-to-fab capabilities including DoD technical areas.

Media Contacts
Alyssa Tufts, Arizona Commerce Authority, [email protected]

Jay Thorne, Arizona State University, [email protected]

Paige Iven, NXP Semiconductors, [email protected]

About the Arizona Commerce Authority
The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is the state's leading economic development organization with a streamlined mission to grow and strengthen Arizona's economy. The ACA uses a three-pronged approach to advance the overall economy: attract, expand, create - attract out-of-state companies to establish operations in Arizona; work with existing companies to expand their business in Arizona and beyond; and help entrepreneurs create new Arizona businesses in targeted industries. For more information, please visit and follow the ACA on Twitter @azcommerce.


About Arizona State University
Arizona State University has developed a new model for the American Research University, creating an institution that is committed to access, excellence and impact. ASU measures itself by those it includes, not by those it excludes. As the prototype for a New American University, ASU pursues research that contributes to the public good, and ASU assumes major responsibility for the economic, social and cultural vitality of the communities that surround it. Learn more about ASU here.


About NXP Semiconductors
NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ: NXPI) brings together bright minds to create breakthrough technologies that make the connected world better, safer and more secure. As a world leader in secure connectivity solutions for embedded applications, NXP is pushing boundaries in the automotive, industrial & IoT, mobile, and communication infrastructure markets while delivering solutions that advance a more sustainable future. Built on more than 60 years of combined experience and expertise, the company has approximately 34,500 team members in more than 30 countries and posted revenue of $13.21 billion in 2022. Find out more at