December 11, 2023

European technology leader imec opens innovation hub at Purdue

Partnership with Belgium-based imec further strengthens Purdue’s capability as leading university in U.S. microelectronics R&D

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University and Belgium-based technological innovation organization imec on Friday (Dec. 8) celebrated the grand opening of a research and development hub at the Convergence Center for Innovation and Collaboration on Purdue’s campus. The presence of imec at Purdue will help facilitate groundbreaking advancements in semiconductor technologies.

Luc Van den hove, Mung Chiang and Jan Jambon Imec President and CEO Luc Van den hove, Purdue President Mung Chiang and Flemish Minister-President Jan Jambon celebrate the grand opening of a research and development hub for semiconductor technologies at Purdue’s Convergence Center. (Purdue University photo) Download image

To mark the occasion, Purdue President Mung Chiang was joined by Luc Van den hove, president and CEO of imec, and Jan Jambon, minister-president of Flanders, the Flemish region of Belgium, following their visit with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation and Gov. Eric Holcomb in Indianapolis.

“Purdue University is excited to open the joint center with imec and IEDC on our campus after the ribbon-cutting ceremony today with Minister-President Jambon and CEO Van den hove,” Chiang said. “Purdue is established as a leading university in semiconductors through successes such as the Department of Defense Microelectronic Commons Hub, SCALE workforce consortium, U.S.-Japan semiconductor alliance, U.S.-India semiconductor partnership and more. This partnership with imec, the crown jewel of chips innovation in Europe, will flourish as a strategically pivotal moment in the growing ecosystem of semiconductors in the heart of the Silicon Heartland. It also builds a bridge between our university and universities and companies in Flanders, in Belgium and in Europe.” 

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The Purdue location represents imec’s first Midwest research office, adding to its offices in California and Florida.

With imec and IEDC’s investment, researchers from the global R&D technology company will work side by side with faculty and students at the Birck Nanotechnology Center, located in Discovery Park District at Purdue. Similarly, students and faculty will have an opportunity to work in Belgium.

group photo The university’s newly opened hub — a Purdue-imec partnership — is the latest in an ever-expanding list of global partnerships and initiatives building the collaborative network that will define the future of semiconductor, nanoelectronics and digital technologies R&D at Purdue. (Purdue University photo) Download image

The partnership is the result of an unprecedented collaboration announced in May among imec, the IEDC and the university.

“Working together, we can leverage each other’s capabilities and enhance the quality and pace of innovation to improve technological outcomes more than we could independently,” said Mark Lundstrom, Purdue’s chief semiconductor officer and senior advisor to the president. “The collaboration aims to capitalize on imec’s extensive global expertise and Purdue’s academic prowess to further propel Indiana into a prominent position within the semiconductor innovation ecosystem.”

The Convergence Center, which is already a hub for interdisciplinary research and collaboration, will now house imec staff, who, in collaboration with Purdue researchers, will aim to push the boundaries of nano- and digital technology innovations. The trans-Atlantic partnership is poised to elevate Indiana’s status in the semiconductor industry by fostering collaborative research and development initiatives among academia, industry and economic development partners.

“The state is a strong supporter of this partnership because of the strong potential for economic development benefits,” said Lundstrom, who was named in April to lead Purdue’s semiconductor task force. “A significant imec presence will help draw other companies here that already partner with imec in Europe and now can collaborate with imec on Purdue’s campus.”

The collaboration aligns with Purdue’s commitment to academic excellence, positions the university at the forefront of cutting-edge technologies and further underscores the multifaceted approach to solidify its position as the heart of the Silicon Heartland.

The addition of the imec location is the latest in an ever-expanding list of global partnerships and initiatives that Purdue has forged to build the collaborative network that will define the future of semiconductor, nanoelectronics and digital technologies R&D at Purdue.

Purdue’s growing semiconductor innovation ecosystem is one of three key pillars of Purdue Computes, a comprehensive initiative across computing departments, physical AI, semiconductors and quantum to enable unparalleled excellence at scale.

About Purdue University

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Writer/Media contact: Wes Mills,; Brian Huchel

Source: Mung Chiang

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