SPIE applauds passage of historic CHIPS-Plus Act to boost US semiconductor manufacturing

The legislation is a boon for the US optics and photonics community
28 July 2022
Image of US Capitol.

The US House of Representatives today passed $52 billion in funding for the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) Act — plus billions more in authorizations for several key scientific agencies — which President Joe Biden said he would sign into law immediately.

“The passage of the CHIPS Act is a giant step forward for semiconductor manufacturing in America,” says SPIE CEO Kent Rochford. “Optics and photonics are key enabling technologies in every aspect of the chip manufacturing process, and the CHIPS Act will have a very positive impact on our community. Just as impactful, since semiconductors are needed for virtually all advanced science and technology, the end result of the CHIPS Act will touch optics and photonics engineers, researchers, and companies in every application that SPIE serves. We appreciate the US Congress working together to pass this critical piece of legislation.”

The legislation is a boon for the US optics and photonics enterprise, which directly enables research, development, and manufacturing of semiconductor devices.

In addition to the large funding investment provided for US semiconductor manufacturing, the new legislation directs the Department of Commerce to establish 20 regional technology hubs throughout the US that will focus on technology development, job creation, and expanding US innovation capacity.

The legislation also includes authorizations and calls for steep funding increases for the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the Department of Energy's Office of Science, and the National Science Foundation.

“Now that these directives are in place, we will look to Congress to follow through on this plan to boost US innovation by appropriating the funds needed to bring this portion of the legislation to fruition,” said SPIE Director of Government Affairs Jennifer O’Bryan.

Executives interested in government policy and funding trends, including details of the CHIPS Act,  are invited to attend the upcoming Photonics Industry Summit 21 Sept in Washington DC.

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