Cardiff University is to receive £50k in seed funding to support the development of the Compound Semiconductor CS Connected cluster, with a chance to win up to £50m to drive regional prosperity.
The early-stage award, from Innovate UK’s Strength in Places Fund , will bring together ten organisations across South Wales.
The University’s Institute for Compound Semiconductors will work in partnership with Cardiff Capital Region City Deal , CS Applications Catapult , CSC Ltd , IQE , Microsemi , Newport Wafer Fab , SPTS Ltd , Swansea University and Welsh Government.
Across the UK, 24 ventures will receive seed funds. Each project will develop bids for bigger awards to be submitted to UK Research and Innovation in late 2019.
Four to eight of the strongest will then receive between £10m and £50m each to carry out projects designed to drive substantial economic growth.
Professor Rudolf Allemann, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Head of College of Physical Sciences and Engineering at Cardiff University, said: “The semiconductor industry has the strength to drive economic and social prosperity across South Wales. It underpins high value manufacturing supply chains and has the potential to create highly skilled, well-paid jobs. Our Strength in Places project will consolidate a rapidly emerging Compound Semiconductor (CS) Cluster in South Wales, and drive new linkages with wider UK industry.”
Announced in the modern Industrial Strategy in November 2017, the Strength in Places Fund will benefit all nations and regions of the UK by enabling them to tap into the world-class research and innovation capability that is spread right across the country.
The fund brings together research organisations, businesses, and local leadership on projects that will lead to significant economic impact, high-value job creation and regional growth.
Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation, Professor Sir Mark Walport , said: ‘Our clear vision is to ensure we benefit everyone through knowledge, talent and ideas. Significant support through the Strength in Places Fund will further catalyse economic potential across the country by bringing researchers, industry and regional leadership together to drive sustained growth through world-class research and innovation.’
The twenty-four projects span the UK, with all nations and regions of the country represented.
UKRI lead on the Strength in Places Fund, David Sweeney , said: ‘There is world-class research and development, and high quality innovation right across the UK, from excellent research in university departments and public research organisations to initiatives from forward-looking businesses. UK Research and Innovation’s Strength in Places Fund will capitalise on these strengths and foster the local ecosystems that can support innovation and sustained growth and will strengthen collaboration between industry and our world-class research base.”