Home Design The Biden Administration opens $285 million funding for ‘digital twin’ chip research institute

The Biden Administration opens $285 million funding for ‘digital twin’ chip research institute

The Biden Administration opens $285 million funding for ‘digital twin’ chip research institute

The Biden Administration has opened applications for $285 million in CHIPS Act funding for an institute to develop digital twins for the chip manufacturing industry. The investment aims to speed up silicon design and engineering while boosting national security. It’s part of a multi-billion-dollar push to establish the US as a thriving chip fabrication powerhouse, reducing dependence on the global supply chain and establishing technological dominance over China.

Digital twins are advanced software models of hardware (in this case, processors) that can help save time and money and increase efficiency. The virtual clones allow engineers to anticipate problems and adjust designs accordingly before manufacturing even begins. The auto industry and Space Force (for satellite simulations) have also used the tech.

The Department of Commerce says AI also plays a role. “Digital twin-based research can also leverage emerging technology like artificial intelligence to help accelerate the design of new U.S. chip development and manufacturing concepts and significantly reduce costs by improving capacity planning, production optimization, facility upgrades, and real-time process adjustments.”


The funding is part of the 2022 CHIPS Act’s $39 billion allocated for semiconductor R&D. The US had already doled out billions in CHIPS Act manufacturing incentives, including $6.4 billion to Samsung, $6.6 billion for TSMC, $6.1 billion for Micron and $8.5 billion for Intel. However, Bloomberg notes that R&D funding like this could be the most crucial piece of the Biden Administration’s long game to spark homegrown silicon innovation and avoid scenarios where supply chain shutdowns halt parts of the US economy and national security.

The government says the institute’s funds will go toward basic operations, research on digital twins, establishing and supporting shared digital facilities and workforce training. The Biden Administration wants to avoid scenarios like depending on foreign adversaries for tech that can influence America’s national security (as the US military increasingly relies on advanced tech), economic independence and supply chain control.

The Biden Administration’s CHIPS program will host a meeting for potential applicants on May 16.

“This new Manufacturing USA institute will not only help to make America a leader in developing this new technology for the semiconductor industry, it will also help train the next generation of American workers and researchers to use digital twins for future advances in R&D and production of chips,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo wrote in a press release.

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