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30 May 2013

NXP granted £2m by UK Government to develop GaN power semiconductors in Hazel Grove

The UK Government’s Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, has announced a £2m boost for research into the development of gallium nitride (GaN) power semiconductors by Netherlands-based electronics firm NXP Semiconductors at its research facility in Hazel Grove, Stockport, near Manchester, UK.

The funding, which comes from the government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF), will support a private sector investment of over £7.5m. The investment is expected to safeguard over 400 existing jobs, create up to 100 new positions in Stockport, and establish the UK as a global research hub for NXP.

Since it is more efficient than conventional silicon, GaN is expected to become a vital resource for the power industry and future electronics market. The material could eventually replace traditional silicon components in power electronic systems such as used in car systems, mobile phones and communications infrastructure as well as cloud computing, it is reckoned.

The funding has been awarded as part of the third round of the Regional Growth Fund and will be used to recruit extra R&D staff, make prototype models, consult the UK’s leading academics, and provide equipment for the development phase. It will support NXP’s investment to create a centre for power semiconductors in its Manchester facility, as well as local businesses and suppliers.

Speaking to the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, Alexander described the funding as “a real boost for the local area, supporting a huge private sector investment and local jobs… The Regional Growth Fund gives us the opportunity to support innovative projects like this.”

The Regional Growth Fund is a £2.6bn fund operating across England from 2011 to 2016. It supports projects and programs that leverage private sector investment to create economic growth and sustainable employment. The first three rounds will generate over £13bn of private sector investment and are expected to create or safeguard over 500,000 jobs. The fourth round (which closed on 20 March, with over 300 bids received) will make a further £350m available.

Tags: NXP



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