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NIST solicits information to improve CHIPS and semiconductor industry

October 20, 2022
By: Jonathan Dillon

The National Institute of Standards of Technology (NIST) is seeking public input through Requests for Information (RFIs) for two programs under the CHIPS Act. Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director Laurie E. Locascio refers to the U.S.’s leadership role in semiconductor manufacturing as “critically important to our prosperity and national security” as they are key components in artificial intelligence and quantum computing. Locasio notes that in order to achieve this, America needs a “whole-of-nation” approach, justifying the two RFIs under different CHIPS programs.

 The CHIPS for America initiative involves two main components: the provision of financial incentives to encourage investment in domestic semiconductor manufacturing, and the establishment of collaborative networks for research and innovation that will ensure an enduring technological edge.

The CHIPS Incentive Program RFI seeks input on the design and implementation of incentive programs, including grants, loans and loan guarantees to ensure that they contribute to private sector investments and knowledge identifying significant supply chain bottlenecks for U.S. semiconductor fabrication facilities and measuring the effectiveness of efforts to combat counterfeiting and relabeling of semiconductors. The RFI is also soliciting information related to designing taxpayer protections that prevent recipients from spending funds from CHIPS on stock buybacks or dividends, as well as information identifying the types of investments that have been effective in promoting inclusive economic growth for communities. Responses to this RFI are due by 5 p.m. Eastern time on Nov. 14, 2022. Responses may be directly submitted via regulations.gov using the “Comment” button, or comments may be sent to RFI@chips.gov.

The Manufacturing USA Institutes RFI seeks input on the development of three new institutes under Manufacturing USA to enhance the U.S. as a pioneer in semiconductor manufacturing through research, education, and development. The RFI solicits feedback related to potential research focus areas (artificial intelligence, testing and metrology, new materials, etc.), and the structure and governance of the new institutes. This RFI is also requesting input around strategies for managing co-investment by businesses, academic institutions and other entities, along with methods for the integration of research and development activities into educational programs to strengthen the workforce.  Responses are due by Nov. 28, 2022, and details on responding can be found in the Federal Register. 

More information is available here.

manufacturing, chips, nist