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News | Feb. 13, 2024

NextFlex News – February 2024

By NextFlex

Dear Members and Colleagues,

As we dive further into 2024, anticipation of CHIPS program announcements continues to build. A bit of new information was recently released, including a Notice of Intent (NOI) to form a new MII under the Department of Commerce to focus on Digital Twins for semiconductor manufacturing, packaging and assembly. This is big news for U.S. manufacturing and the NOFO soliciting proposals will seek to significantly reduce chip development and manufacturing costs, improve cycle time, advance digital twin-enabled curricula for training the national manufacturing workforce, and create a digital twin marketplace for industry. This new institute will be awarded approximately $200M over a five-year period and the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) will likely be released in Q2 of 2024.

Secondly, we’ve learned that CHIPS Research and Development Office (CHIPS R&D) will announce via a NOFO, an open competition for new R&D activities to establish and accelerate domestic capacity for advanced packaging substrates and substrate materials, anticipating $300M in total funding for multiple projects, up to $100M per award. The scope of this program includes flexible, biocompatible substrates and embedded features. Further announcement on this opportunity is expected no later than March 2024.

We’ve been working with a group of advisors and members to help guide the development of a NextFlex White Paper in anticipation of these announcements. If you’d like to contribute to the White Paper, please reach out to me as soon as possible, as we intend to propose new programs for ecosystem development, enhancing the Technology Hub for additive packaging, and scaling the NextFlex Education and Workforce Development program to extend into packaging technology. Finally, save the date for a new NextFlex workshop, entitled, “Advancing Electronics Packaging of Hybrid Electronics for Industrial and Medical Applications,” which will be held April 18 at Binghamton University in New York. This one-day workshop will explore and define collaborative responses to the above-mentioned opportunities. Hope to see you there.


Dr. Art Wall
Director of Engineering and Fab Operations and Co-Executive Director Pro Tem