World’s first compound semiconductor cluster launches in Wales

The world’s first compound semiconductor cluster has launched in South Wales, bringing together technology companies and academics.

At the Wales Festival of Innovation, Newport Water Fab held a conference to declare the cluster open. More than 100 people attended the event.

It attracted technology professionals, university researchers, existing and potential customers, government agencies and key supply chain partners.

Named CSconnected, the cluster consists of organisations that are associated with the research, development, innovation and manufacturing of semiconductor technologies.

Supporters include the likes of Cardiff University, Swansea University, Compound Semiconductor Centre, the CSA Catapult, IQE PLC, Newport Wafer Fab, SPTS and Microsemi.

Over the next few years, the organisation will aim to create 2000 high-tech careers for the Welsh economy and develop the technologies that’ll underpin the fourth industrial revolution.

Semiconductors will drive future technologies such as the Internet of Things, robotics, autonomous vehicles, 5G and healthcare applications.

Sam Evans, a Newport Wafer Fab director, said: “The post-conference feedback has been excellent. The CS Cluster concept is a compelling one, bringing together a unique collection of specialist organisations. The event has started and progressed so many opportunities.?

Speaking previously, Carwyn Jones – the first minister of Wales – said the project is a major coup for South East Wales and said it’ll generate thousands of high-quality jobs for the country.

“I am delighted our initial £12m investment has kick-started the creation of the world’s first compound semiconductor industry cluster in Newport,” he commented.

“Our support for the Institute for Compound Semiconductor Technology has been widely recognised as the catalyst for developing this world-leading cluster, which is expected to create more than 2,000 well-paid jobs and be the cornerstone of a truly transformative project for the area.”