1 November 2021
National SiC facility at University of Arkansas gains $5m more in grants from US Army
Following an $18m grant received in early October from the US National Science Foundation (NSF) to fund construction and operation of the national silicon carbide (SiC) research and fabrication facility, the University of Arkansas has now received further grants exceeding $5m ($4.5m from the US Army Research Office and $900,000 from the Army Research Laboratory) for the facility. Alan Mantooth, Distinguished Professor of electrical engineering, is principal investigator for both grants.
The Army Research Office grant will be used for equipment, and the Army Research Laboratory grant for student and staff compensation, tuition and materials for supporting collaborative research activities with the Army Research Lab.
Combining cutting-edge equipment and infrastructure with a core of research experts focused on silicon carbide semiconductor devices, sensors and integrated circuits, the fabrication facility will develop new electronics to address areas of national defense. Researchers are tasked with fabricating more energy-efficient and heat-resistant ICs for compact and robust electronic devices for branches of the US military.
The facility will also train the next generation of semiconductor researchers and engineers for working in both the silicon and silicon carbide semiconductor industries. Students at all degree levels will be given research opportunities and be exposed to a high-need area of science and technology. The research also aims to engage under-represented students in this burgeoning area of electronics.
Picture: Zhong Chen (associate professor of electrical engineering); Greg Salamo (Distinguished Professor of physics); Shannon Davis (business and operations manager in the Department of Electrical Engineering); and Alan Mantooth, Distinguished Professor of electrical engineering,
With now decades of experience working with silicon carbide, Mantooth will lead a team that will acquire, install and integrate equipment for the purpose of building a low-volume prototyping facility to produce silicon carbide ICs.
In addition to Mantooth, researchers on the project include Greg Salamo (Distinguished Professor of physics); Zhong Chen (associate professor of electrical engineering); and Shannon Davis (business and operations manager in the Department of Electrical Engineering).